The opening of the new line will be celebrated with a day of free travel across the three-line network on April 27.

G Line services will operate at 15-30 minute headways with a 27-minute journey time between the western terminus at Wheat Ridge and Denver Union Station, an interchange with RTD’s two other commuter rail lines, three light rail lines, Amtrak long-distance trains and MetroRide buses.

The G Line has eight stations, seven of them park-and-ride facilities with a total of 2300 parking spaces.

Originally due to open in late 2016, the launch of the G Line was postponed due to problems with Positive Train Control (PTC) failing to activate level crossing barriers with accurate timing, which led to delays in obtaining federal and state approval for passenger operation.

The opening of the G Line marks the completion of Denver’s Eagle PPP commuter rail project. In addition to the G Line, the Eagle PPP included the 37.8km University of Colorado A Line from Union Station to Denver International Airport, which opened in April 2016, the 9.7km B Line from Union Station to Westminster, which was inaugurated in July 2016, and a new depot at Fox Street north of Union Station.

The project was implemented by PPP contractor Denver Transit Partners, a consortium of John Laing, Fluor, and Aberdeen Asset Management under a $US 2.2bn 34-year design-build-operate- maintain concession awarded by RTD.

The project is being financed with the aid of a $US 1.03bn Full Funding Grant Agreement from the Federal Transit Administration and $US 450m from the private sector.

Services on the three lines are operated by a fleet of two-car Silverliner V EMU cars supplied by Hyundai Rotem. Each 26m-long car accommodates up to 232 passengers, 91 of them seated, with two wheelchair spaces. The 125km/h trains were being assembled at the Hyundai Rotem USA plant in Philadelphia, using bodyshells fabricated in Korea.

For detailed data on commuter rail projects around the globe, subscribe to IRJ Pro.