This week, the Finance and Economic Development Committee received an update on the Confederation Line light rail transit (LRT) system. The Committee was informed that the Rideau Transit Group has confirmed that the construction schedule has shifted due to the June 2016 sinkhole. As a result, the City expects service to the public to begin later in November 2018.
I have heard from many residents the disappointment in this later-than-anticipated date and I do share this disappointment, particularly in the delay of how the information was shared and the delay of service benefits. The constractor, Rideau Transit Group (RTG), is under a strict Project Agreement (PA) with the City of Ottawa. Although this newest update extends well beyond the originally agreed upon completion date of May 24, 2018, the PA is structured to motivate RTG to complete the project and deliver the system to the City by November 2, 2018, as the PA is designed to require RTG to potentially absorb significant costs related to interest penalties, equity return, loss of maintenance payments, and ongoing labour and construction costs beyond what they have budgeted. Additionally, the City would receive $1 million in liquidated damages should RTG miss the new date of November 2, 2018.
With that said, while November may still seem very far away, I am happy to hear that Ottawa’s largest infrastructure project in history is still slated for a 2018 opening date! LRT will help to revolutionize transportation within the City of Ottawa and change the way we look at travel from Ottawa’s West, East, and South ends, spanning almost 60km.
Remember to keep updated on LRT updates as they arise by visiting http://www.stage2lrt.ca/