New independent consultant begins assessment of LRT return-to-service plan


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The City has found an independent consultant to review the plan to bring the struggling Confederation Line back to service.

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City manager Steve Kanellakos told council on Monday that he hired the Philadelphia TRA company for the position and the company has already sent staff to the Ottawa LRT system for a preliminary assessment.

The $ 2.1 billion light rail system has been out of service since September 19 when a train derailed near Tremblay Station, damaging the train and track infrastructure. The case is still under investigation by the Transportation Safety Board. No one was hurt. This was the second derailment on a main line of an Alstom Citadis train from Ottawa since the beginning of August.

The transit commission ordered city staff to hire an independent consultant to assess the return-to-service plan before the light rail system again welcomes customers. The city initially hired STV, but the company would not have been truly independent since it has already done LRT related work for the city.

Kanellakos said TRA “had no previous relationship” with the parent companies of the Rideau Transit Group and had not performed work for the City of Ottawa.

TRA’s preliminary assessment will lead to deadlines for the independent review, Kanellakos said in a note to the board.

There has been no indication when the LRT system will operate again. RTG’s maintenance affiliate initially said it would be a three-week solution, but the time estimate has not been confirmed by the city.

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