Canada: Vancouver city authority has bought part of a 1·5 km of right-of-way through CP’s False Creek yard for a proposed light rail line between SkyTrain at Main Street and Science World.

Great Britain: London Underground has invited tenders for its Connect network-wide radio communications Private Finance Initiative; prequalified are Gensys, led by GPT, and Racal BRT.

Japan: Keihin Electric Railway has taken delivery of the first Series 8000 four-car EMU for through working on to the Kyoto metro.

Spain: Madrid’s regional government has signed an agreement with Caja de Madrid bank covering research for the proposed introduction of smartcards in 1999. They could be used to pay for various municipal services, including metro and bus travel.OCP and Entrecanales have won a Pts5bn contract for mechanical and electrical fitting-out of part of Valencia’s metro Line 5.

USA: On January 22 Ansaldo Signal won a $21m contract from New York City Transit Authority for signalling equipment for the Queens Connector metro extension.

Nycta has bought a Vaktrak permanent way vacuum cleaner from Socofer of France. The five-section train can remove up to 15m3 of rubbish from the track, and can suck up objects weighing up to 3 kg.

The JMA joint venture of Hatch Mott MacDonald, Jacobs Engineering and ACG Environments has won a US$65m contract for construction management of Los Angeles metro Red line 5·6 km Eastside extension.