USA: Hitachi Rail STS USA has been formally awarded a $798m contract to design, supply and install lineside and onboard communications-based train control equipment on the San Francisco Bay Area’s 200 km BART network.

Replacing the existing fixed-block signalling with CBTC forms a key element of the $3·5bn Transbay Corridor Core Capacity Project, which aims to increase peak capacity to 30 10-car trains per hour in 2029.

Announcing the contract award on October 1, Hitachi said CBTC would enable BART to reduce headways and tighten schedules, while also improving reliability and maintainability and reducing costs.

‘Replacing and modernising BART’s 50-year-old train control system will be a generational project that will benefit our riders for decades to come’, said Carl Holmes, the operator’ Assistant General Manager for Planning, Development & Construction. ‘CBTC will allow us to deliver world class service and meet the future needs of the San Francisco Bay Area.’

The contract includes options covering the provision of CBTC for the future Silicon Valley Phase 2 extension from Berryessa to Santa Clara.

Parsons Corp has been providing engineering services to support the development of BART’s CBTC programme for the past five years, and has now been awarded a $45m contract to provide design services during construction. A matching $45m contract to provide design services during construction has been awarded to Systra. Hitachi Rail STS has been awarded a separate $8·6m contract to provide training and expert support services for up to 20 years.