The TTC agenda for next week includes a report on the status of the new LRV project.
Seven companies expressed interest in bidding, although one dropped out. They are:
- Kinkisharyo (No longer participating)
The TTC plans to include public participation in the evaluation of possible new cars. This will include a website (presumably not designed by the wizards responsible for the existing one), and would-be vendors will be asked to provide a car for viewing. I suspect that this will cull a few more from the list as the expense of bringing a car to Toronto is substantial, and only someone with deep pockets and a fair hope of winning the bid would undertake this.
The current plan is to award a contract in June 2008 with the prototype cars delivered in 2010. Cynics among us will point out that this corresponds with the next municipal election cycle.
The nub of this issue is funding. Council is pursuing a tri-partite arrangement with Queen’s Park and Ottawa, a scheme that could very well see this in limbo for years.
We don’t have years. The cars proposed here will only cover replacement of the existing fleet let alone expansion into new routes. Maybe with our “new revenue tools”, Council will shoulder more of the cost locally and we will stop holding the transit system hostage to three-way political haggling.