Two Canadian rail PPPs move forward

An RFQ was issued for the Davenport Diamond upgrades, while shortlisted teams were invited to submit bids to build the Hurontario Light Rail.

Infrastructure Ontario and Metrolinx pushed ahead with two rail PPPs aimed at boosting Toronto’s GO Transit network last week.

On Thursday, the agencies issued a request for qualifications for the Davenport Diamond Rail Grade Separation project, which would see an overpass built to accommodate expanded service at Toronto’s Barrie Rail Corridor. The project will divide the GO Rail corridor, running north to south, and the CP Rail corridor, which runs east to west, in an effort to reduce delays.

The same day, IO and Metrolinx released a request for proposals to build the Hurontario Light Rail Transit system in the Mississauga and Brampton area. In June, that project – which will add 20km of rail under the design-build-operate-finance-maintain model – saw three bidders shortlisted. The shortlisted teams are Hurontario Light Rail Connection Partners, comprising Madrid-based Cintra and Acciona and France-based Colas Group as equity partners; Mobilinx, which comprises Astaldi, John Laing, Hitachi-Ansaldo, Transdev and Amico Concessions; and Trillium Transit Partners, which includes Nebraska-based Kiewit and Paris-based Meridiam and Keolis.

Both projects will be delivered using IO’s Alternative Finance and Procurement model, which looks to transfer risk to the private sector.

For the Davenport Diamond project, shortlisted bidders will be invited to issue proposals in early 2018, IO said. It is part of an effort to boost the GO Regional Express Rail network, which plans to increase the number of weekly trips from 1,500 to 6,000 by 2025.

Construction on the Hurontario system is expected to begin next year, with service starting in 2022.