Metro Bilbao has completed a programme to add a fifth trailer car to 13 Series 500 and all nine Series 600 trainsets, using vehicles ordered at a cost of €32m. Infrastructure work costing €26m included depot lifting equipment and changes to signalling software.

The first of 60 MI09 double-deck EMUs being built for RATP by Alstom and Bombardier under a €917m order funded by STIF was officially launched into revenue service on Paris RER Line A by President Sarkozy on December 5. They will replace MI84 single-deck trainsets, providing a significant increase in capacity on the busy line.

Frankfurt transport operator VGF inaugurated a new route 18 from the city centre to Gravensteiner Platz on December 11, serving 3·5 km of new line with eight stops, built at a cost of €50m. Diverging from the existing network at Rohrbachstrasse, the extension includes 1·4 km of grassed track.

On December 1, EIB and the Metropolitan Community of Tours announced a €150m loan to fund the city’s first tram line now under construction. Linking Lycée Vaucanson in the north with Lycée Jean Monnet in the south via the city centre and Joué-lès-Tours, the 148 km route will have 29 stops.

The UK government has agreed to contribute £76·2m towards the £115·9m Croxley Rail Link project to divert London Underground’s Metro­politan line from Croxley to Watford Junction.

On December 1 the Mayor of Toulouse announced an agreement with munici­pal development body Sicoval to finance a €370m 5 km extension of VAL light metro Line B to Labège-Innople by 2019. Construction would start in 2015.

With funding from STIF, Réseau Ferré de France is to study the feasibility of doubling the Châtelet – Gare du Nord tunnel used by Paris RER lines B and D.

Nürnberg metro line U3 was extended 11 km north to Kaulbachplatz and Friedrich-Ebert-Platz on December 10.

The US Department of Transportation has approved a $280m loan for Denver Regional Transportation District’s Eagle P3 commuter rail project. Coming from the federal Transportation Infrastructure Finance & Innovation Act in 2013, the money is in addition to the $1bn being provided through a full funding grant agreement signed in 2011. The public-private partnership covers construction of the Gold Line from Union Station to Arvada and Wheat Ridge and the East Line to Denver International Airport.Read more in the December issue of Metro Report International.