Belgium: De Lijn Oost Vlaanderen officially opened the extension of its Gent tram network from St Pieters SNCB station to Zwijnaardebrug on May 26. Public services on routes 21 and 22 began using the new line on May 28.

China: With the migration of the Tsuen Wan, Kwun Tong and Island lines successfully completed, all five MTR routes are now controlled from the Tsing Yi Operations Control Centre commissioned in 1998. The OCC will also control the Tseung Kwan O line opening in 2002 and the proposed North Island and Penny’s Bay extensions (RG 4.00 p249).

France: The communauté urbaine of Bordeaux signed a contract on May 26 with an Alstom-led consortium that should see work on the city’s first light rail route (RG 3.00 p137) start this month. The government is providing Fr528·7m, or 15·5%, towards the cost of the 22·2 km line.

The government has indicated its willingness to provide a major contribution towards the cost of building Line B of the Toulouse metro (MR99 p61), which at its southern terminus would interchange with buses and the motorway network. Semvat is to participate in studies of a card covering road tolls, parking and public transport to the city centre.

Germany: Siemens Transportation Systems has begun deliveries of 14 four-section 30m Combino LRVs to Erfurt, and of four three-section 19m all-powered vehicles to Nordhausen. The orders are worth DM60m and deliveries are due for completion by 2002.

Great Britain: Alstom Signalling has awarded AEA Technology a contract to upgrade the Integrated Electronic Control Centre at Gateshead, as part of the project to operate Tyne & Wear Metro trains from Pelaw to Sunderland and South Hylton on Railtrack infrastructure (RG 12.99 p817).

London Underground hopes to start work in 2001 on rebuilding Wembley Park station. The £72m scheme includes a new ticket hall and improved access to handle up to 50000passengers/h.

Hungary: Using funding from the government and the city authorities, Budapest Transport is to spend HF300m this year on the design of modernisation work for metro Line 2. A 10-year programme including new trains and signalling as well as improved drainage, ventilation and access for the disabled has been costed at HF22bn.

Singapore: SMRT has put into service the first six of 21 trainsets being delivered by Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Nippon Sharyo of Japan. Some will be deployed on the Changi Airport line due to open at the end of 2001.

USA: Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has ordered 82 metro cars from CAF of Spain. The contract is worth Pts20bn.

Sound Transit has shortlisted two consortia to bid by July 14 to design and build a pair of 5·8m diameter light rail tunnels running 7·25 km from the existing trolleybus tunnel to the University; a contract will be awarded in the autumn.

Chicago Transit Authority has awarded URS Corp a $60m contract to provide programme management services for CTA’s five-year $1·2bn Capital Improvement Programme.