GROUNDBREAKING ceremonies were held on January 21 for Denver’s 14 km Southwest Corridor light rail extension. Regional Transportation District Chairman Ben Klein said the event marked ’the culmination of a dozen years of studies, planning and preparation.’ Detailed engineering design is due to be finished by the end of this year, but construction will start in earnest during the spring for completion in 2000. The Southwest Corridor runs from the existing terminus at I-25 & Broadway to Mineral Avenue in the suburb of Littleton (RG 10.96 p649).

RTD signed a full-funding grant agreement with the Federal Transit Administration last May, under which the FTA has promised $120m towards the $156m extension and 14 extra LRVs. A second tranche of money was released on January 15, providing $1·3m towards the purchase of railway right-of-way, and bringing the FTA contribution so far to $2·8m. o