Archive for October, 2009

EA Notice of Completion for Scarborough-Malvern LRT

Friday, October 16th, 2009

Scarborough-Malvern LRTIt was announced today that the EA for the Scarborough-Malvern LRT line has been completed. There is a 30-day period where concerns may be raised. See this document for more information.

York Region Set To Sign $50 million Bus Deal

Friday, October 16th, 2009

It was reported in recent editions of York Region community newspapers that the region is set to sign a deal worth up to $50 million for additional buses for the  Viva fleet over the next five years.

The initial order is for fifteen 18.2 metre long buses at a cost of just under $1 million each to be delivered in 2010. This contract will be with Nova Bus, a division of Volvo, who was the only real contender in the bidding process. Seven companies picked up the RFP, which closed in May, but only two companies responded. The other company to respond was New Flyer, but they failed to meet the 25% Canadian content that was a necessary requirement in order for the region to receive upper-level government funding. Nova Bus is actually providing 48% Canadian content, and their bid scored the highest technical score and lower submission price by about $1 million. The contract will allow the purchase of up to an additional 36 buses until 2014. 

Van Hool, the manufacturer of the current fleet of Viva buses, was  not able to bid. I suspect this may have been due to the Canadian content requirement. Some regional councillors were disappointed they were unable to bid, given the level of satisfaction with the two models (12 metre newA330  and 18 metre newAG300) purchased from them in the current fleet.

There will be some similarities in design with the  newAG300 buses in use on the Blue route, but one notable difference is that the Nova Bus models will have rear-located engines. The newAG300s have centrally-located engines, providing a quiet rear seating section, which are popular with customers.

The base price for each new bus is $902,234 plus GST.  I’m guessing that HST won’t apply because this will be considered “transitional” as the contract will be signed before the HST comes into effect. There will be an additional $35,000 in optional enhancements to ensure the vehicles are up to Viva’s design standards. My calculations make that $984,095.70 total per bus, or $49,204,785 for a contract of 51 buses.

Council will vote on the proposal at its October 22 meeting.

Contributions Always Welcome

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

I cannot express enough thanks when I receive contributions to this site. Sometimes they come in the form of pointing out errors or providing updated information. All of these help in trying to keep information that is up-to-date and useful for everyone.

Occasionally, I get contributions that are quite substantial. The Calgary page was quite low on content until Aman Hayer contacted me an offered to take more photos of the system.

Recently, I was contacted by James Greenhalgh who provided me with new photos for the Dallas page and the Buffalo page. I finished the update of the Dallas page in the past week, and will be doing the same for the Buffalo page soon. In addition to this, James had material for a couple of new cities that were not already featured on this site. He offered to create the entire pages for these and I am pleased to announce that the first such page is now online: San Diego.

Once again, many thanks to James and Aman, and all the others who have contacted me with updates and corrections.