CANADA: Edmonton’s Valley Line Southeast light rail route opened on November 4, running 13·1 km from 102 Street in the city centre to Mill Woods.
The project forms part of the city’s plan to develop accessible, convenient and sustainable travel options, with a target of 50% of trips being made by public or active transport.
The line has been built by the TransEd Partners consortium under a PPP contract which covers design, construction, financing and 30 years of operation and maintenance.
The consortium comprises Bechtel, EllisDon, Alstom and Fengate Capital Management Ltd, supported by Arup Canada and IBI Group.
Financial close was reached in February 2016 and a groundbreaking ceremony took place two months later, when opening had been planned for late 2020.
|Province of Alberta||C$600m|
|City of Edmonton||C$800m|
Alstom supplied 26 low-floor light rail vehicles from its Kingston, Ontario factory in 2018-21, as successor to original consortium member Bombardier Transportation. The LRVs have space for wheelchair users and bicycles, as well as priority seats near all of the doors.
Alstom also has a majority share in the joint venture responsible for operations and maintenance on behalf of for TransEd; Alstom said this represents the first light rail line where it is involved in the complete O&M scope.
London Trackwork supplied track including turnouts and crossovers.
There are 11 street-level stops and one elevated stop, including a 1 300-space Park & Ride site at Davies. These feature heated shelters, open sight lines, emergency phones, and CCTV.
The line includes the Tawatinâ Bridge across North Saskatchewan River, a short tunnel from the north face of the River Valley through to the Quarters redevelopment, and an interchange with the existing Metro and Capital LRT lines at Churchill Square.
As part of the city’s public art policy there are 13 works of art along the route, including glass, sculptures, a mosaic and a series of paintings.
‘I know many Edmontonians have been looking forward to opening day for the better part of two decades’, said Mayor Amarjeet Sohi ahead of the opening. ‘Valley Line Southeast will offer an affordable and climate-friendly choice to move around our city for decades to come.’
TransEd Partners CEO Ronald Joncas said ‘this has been a long journey, with challenges and detours, but we’re confident in the system we’ve built’.