Belgium: Work has been completed at Sainte-Catherine under a programme running until 2009 to refurbish 24 stations on the STIB metro and pre-metro networks in Brussels. The €100m programme is being funded by the regional and federal governments.

Canada: On June 27 the TransLink board authorised a study for a rapid transit line along the Broadway from Commercial Drive, through central Vancouver to the University of British Columbia. SkyTrain and light rail will be considered, with the preferred option to be submitted to the board in early 2009.

China: Shenzhen Metro Corp has awarded a consortium of Siemens and China Railway Signal & Communication Corp a €28m contract to supply LZB 700 M automatic train control systems for the 23 km extension of Line 1 which is due to open to the city's international airport by 2010.

India: Bangalore Metro Corp has awarded Rites and Systra a contract to design a Rs970m depot and related property development at Byapanahalli to serve the first phase of the planned two-line metro.

South Korea: Construction consortium subcontractor Rotem has awarded Thales a contaract to supply SelTrac communications-based train control for the 23·4 km driverless light metro being built between Pusan and Kimhae. 25 Rotem trainsets will serve the 18 stations at 114 sec headways when the line opens in 2011.

Netherlands: On July 19 RET announced an order for 53 Alstom Citadis trams worth more than €100m to replace Duewag ZGT vehicles. A contract will be signed in October, with deliveries beginning in mid-2009 at a rate of four/month and bringing Rotterdam's Citadis fleet to 113 cars.

Poland: This month Rail.One will complete the delivery of 5?000 m of Rheda City ballastless track to Warszawa for use in the upgrading of the east-west tram route along Aleje Jerozolimskie.

Russia: On July 6 Siemens and Moscow transport operator Mosgortrans signed an agreement for the joint development of a low-floor tram for the capital.

Spain: FGV has opened the first section of light rail Line 4 in Alacant (RG 6.07 p330), a 2 km branch from Lucentum to Avenida de las Naciones via three intermediate stops. Work is due to begin later this year on an extension to form a loop off Line 3 to El Campello.

Work has begun on the access shaft that will be used to launch a TBM to bore the 3·1 km extension of Madrid metro Line 11 from La Peseta to La Fortuna. This €105m project forms part of the regional government's 2007-11 expansion programme that should also see the metro extended to Las Rosas, Mirasierra, Majadahonda and El Casar.

Sweden: Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings has won a 10-year contract from Storstockholms Lokaltrafik to manage advertising space on local trains, the metro, buses and other sites from January 1 2008. General Manager Maria Skoglund said 'transit advertising is the fastest-growing medium next to the internet in Sweden.'

UK: On July 18 airport owner BAA handed over to London Underground 1·7 km of tunnels which will extend the Piccadilly Line to serve the £4·3bn Terminal 5 now being completed at Heathrow Airport. Public services will begin on March 27 2008.

Stagecoach took over operations of Greater Manchester's Metrolink light rail system from previous concessionaire Serco on July 15.

USA: Minneapolis-St Paul metropolitan council has authorised a contract with DMJM Harris worth up to $35·5m for preliminary engineering on the 17·7 km Central Corridor light rail project. The study will identify savings to reduce the $1bn price by $200m to meet federal cost-effectiveness standards. Construction could begin in 2010 for opening in 2014.

  • Caption: Bombardier has begun manufacturing sub-assemblies for an eight car pre-production trainset as part of the replacement of the rolling stock fleets on London Underground's Metropolitan, Hammersmith & City, District, and Circle large-profile sub-surface lines. The first of the trains will enter service on the Metropolitan Line in 2010
  • Caption: At the Czech Raildays show in Ostrava during June, Inekon Trams displayed the first of three TRIO 12 three-section low-floor asynchronous-motored trams ordered by Washington MATA in a US$ 8·6m contract signed in October 2004. The bi-directional air-conditioned cars will be operated on a 4·3 km pilot line