Belgium: STIB will begin putting the 15 six-car Boa metro trainsets supplied by CAF into service on Brussels Line 1B this month.
Bulgaria: Having received no bids during two previous privatisation attempts, the city of Sofia has lowered to 25m leva the price it expects to obtain from the sale of the Tramcar EAD repair business. Buyers will take on a €13·6m EBRD-funded deal with Czech firm Inekon for the modernisation of 18 of Sofia's trams, the first of which return to service this month.
Croatia: In July Zagreb tram operator ZET ordered a second batch of 70 trams from the Crotram consortium of Koncar and Gredelj, which had delivered the last of an initial batch of 70 cars the previous month.
Czech Republic: A build-operate-transfer model has been proposed for the planned €1·6bn Praha metro Line D by Radovan Steiner, city councillor responsible for transport. Construction of the 10-station Line D, or Blue Line, is expected to start in 2010, and driverless operation has been proposed for the route running 11 km south from the main station to Písnice.
Mexico: Metro operator STC has awarded Alstom a US$75m contract to supply new traction equipment for 25 trainsets operating on Mexico City Line 8. The contract includes maintenance over a period of 10 years.
Spain: Following the completion in July of a €49m programme to retrofit Series 2000 and 6000 trainsets, all Madrid Metro rolling stock is now air-conditioned.
The first of 18 Series 3000 trainsets being refurbished by Tradinsa has returned to service on Barcelona metro Line 3. Costing €680 000 per unit, the work due for completion by 2010 includes new seats and inter-car gangways to increase passenger capacity by 12%.
UAE: Developer Nakheel has appointed Singapore MRT subsidiary SMRT Engineering to operate the 1·4bn dirham monorail under construction at The Palm Jumeirah in Dubai. The 5·45 km driverless Hitachi straddle monorail serving four stations is due to open in December 2008.
UK: On August 2 the Mayor of London announced the abandonment of plans for a 20 km street-running tramway between Shepherd's Bush and Uxbridge in West London. Ealing Council had withdrawn its support for the project, and bus services will instead be improved, on the assumption that the government will approve the Crossrail project.
On July 23 the £5m Lovatt earth pressure-balance TBM 'Carla' completed the second bore of a 1·8 km tunnel under the River Thames. The tunnel forms part of the £180m extension of the Docklands Light Railway by 2·5 km from King George V to Woolwich Arsenal. Opening is planned for 2009.
Legal powers have been obtained to upgrade infrastructure on the Docklands Light Railway to allow the use of three-car trains from 2009. Grade separation will increase capacity at a complex junction at the heart of the light metro in east London.
USA: DART has awarded Siemens a $30m contract to supply 24 Sutras thyristor-controlled rectifier DC traction power substations for the 44 km Green Line in Dallas in 2008-10. Options cover a further 14 of the substations, to be produced at Trondheim in Norway.
The $13·5m extension of the Portland Streetcar by 800 m to SW Lowell and Bond streets opened with free rides on August 17; revenue services began on August 20.
On August 2 San Francisco's Peninsular Corridor Joint Powers Board voted to purchase eight Bombardier double-deck coaches for Caltrain at a cost of $22m.
Twin Cities Metropolitan Council has awarded Aecom Technology a $91m consultancy contract for the $930m Central Corridor light rail project, a 17·7 km line which is being planned to link Minneapolis Metrodome with the University of Minnesota and downtown St Paul from 2014.
New Jersey Transit has begun acquiring property for a 1·6 km extension of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail line from 22nd Street in Bayonne to 8th Street . Construction will begin in 2008 for opening in late 2009.