Operating agreement reached for Toronto's new light rail transit lines
TORONTO, Oct. 3, 2012 /CNW/ - Metrolinx and the Toronto Transit Commission have reached an agreement on the operations and maintenance of Toronto's four new provincially-funded light rail transit (LRT) lines.
Under this arrangement, the TTC will operate the four Toronto LRT lines under contract with Metrolinx, while Metrolinx's private sector partner maintains the assets.
"The McGuinty Government is investing a record $8.4 billion dollars to build the high-quality LRT projects Torontonians expect and deserve," said Bob Chiarelli, Minister of Transportation. "We are determined to get the best value for taxpayer dollars."
"Metrolinx and the TTC agree on the urgent need to expand transit," said Metrolinx CEO Bruce McCuaig. "This agreement was the result of ongoing, open discussion and we are pleased that we have developed a plan that will achieve maximum value for the Province's investment."
"Metrolinx and the Toronto Transit Commission are working together to provide effective and integrated transit services in Toronto so that customers can get where they need to go faster, more reliably, and more comfortably," said TTC Chair Karen Stintz.
"We are very pleased that under this agreement, operations will be delivered by the TTC. For decades Toronto has been the global model for integrated public transit, and this agreement ensures that the system will be seamless in terms of operations, safety and security," said TTC CEO Andy Byford. "
Highlights of Metrolinx-TTC Agreement
Metrolinx will use the Alternative Financing and Procurement (AFP) framework managed by Infrastructure Ontario (IO) to deliver the projects, subject to the completion of positive value for money analysis. The purpose of using the AFP model will be to achieve maximum value for the Province's investment, while delivering safe, effective and integrated transit services for the people of the City of Toronto and the broader region. It is agreed that Metrolinx and the TTC share the same objectives of delivering safe, effective and integrated transit services, and that the Metrolinx projects will need to be operated in a fashion that provides a seamless customer experience with the TTC system.
In applying the AFP approach, Metrolinx and IO will adopt a Design Build Finance Maintain (DBFM) model to deliver efficient and effective Light Rail Transit (LRT) services. Operations will be delivered by the TTC, on behalf of Metrolinx, over an initial 10 year operating agreement, which could be extended by mutual agreement. Under this arrangement, the TTC will, under contract with Metrolinx, operate the four LRT lines, while Metrolinx's agent maintains the assets.
Metrolinx, TTC and IO will establish a dedicated team to document standards and requirements for the purposes of including appropriate provisions in the AFP procurement documents. This will include provisions to manage the interface between the maintainer (Metrolinx's agent) and the operator (TTC), to minimize the risk of any lack of coordination between the TTC and the maintainer.
The agreement will include mechanism to ensure expeditious resolution of interface issues during operations. The objective will be to deliver clear and specific direction on the roles and responsibilities of the parties in maintenance and operations, the interaction between these activities and the ultimate oversight by Metrolinx. The objective will be to have these standards and requirements in place by the end of 2012 in order to inform subsequent procurement activities.
Over the longer term, it will also be required that Metrolinx, the City of Toronto and the TTC enter into a second operating agreement under the Master Agreement. This second operating agreement will include:
- a methodology to estimate the number of riders that board the four Metrolinx transit lines and transfer onto the TTC, and board the TTC and transfer onto the four Metrolinx transit lines, in order to appropriately share fare box revenue,
- description of the broader commercial arrangements,
- the treatment of any savings in the provision of existing TTC services along the four Metrolinx transit lines,
- the setting of fares, and
- the treatment of any required operating subsidies on the four Metrolinx transit lines.
The terms of the second operating agreement will be finalized at least two years in advance of the launch of revenue service for any of the Metrolinx projects.
Toronto's New Light Rail Program
- Light rail is a mode of transit that uses high capacity electric trains with an overhead power supply. These trains run separately from traffic: either above ground, underground in tunnels, or on elevated guideways.
- Toronto's light rail network will have convenient stops within easy walking distance. For riders, light rail means comfort, convenience, reliability and speed.
- Coordinated signal timing limits interference with traffic. For drivers, this means fewer buses and improved traffic flow.
- The new lines will span the city, connecting neighbourhoods that need high quality transit. These include Rexdale, Jane/Finch, Agincourt, Fairbank and northeast Scarborough.
- The four lines are:
- The Eglinton Crosstown line will provide vital new east-west service across much of the city, running underground from around Black Creek Drive to Laird Avenue, then above ground to Kennedy Station.
- The Scarborough RT will be replaced and upgraded with a modern, reliable and higher-capacity LRT service, and extended north to Sheppard Avenue.
- The Finch West line will connect the extended Spadina subway at Keele to Humber College in north Etobicoke.
- The Sheppard East line will run from the eastern end of the Sheppard subway to Morningside, connecting with the extended Scarborough RT.
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SOURCE: MetrolinxFor further information: