October 24, 2013

MBTA to replace trains as part of infrastructure investments

As part of four historic transportation infrastructure investments, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) will launch a $1.3 billion program to replace and increase the capacity of the Red Line and Orange Line trains.

The projects announced will bring reliable, long-term relief to commuters who travel the Massachusetts Turnpike and rely on the Red and Orange lines to get to work and school. Gov. Deval Patrick made the announcement at a Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce government affairs forum where he addressed generational responsibility and the importance of expanding economic opportunity for people throughout Massachusetts by investing in education, innovation and infrastructure.

The MBTA on Tuesday issued Requests for Proposals for the $1.3 billion procurement to replace the 44-year old Red Line cars and 32-year old Orange Line cars. The project will deliver at least 226 vehicles; 152 Orange Line cars, replacing the entire fleet of 120 and 74 Red Line cars, with an option to increase the fleet to 132.

The new cars will provide improved reliability, accessibility and energy efficiency. New car features include increased capacity and additional seating, wider and electrically operated doors, four accessible areas per car, LED lighting, modern HVAC systems and advanced passenger information and announcement systems.

The MBTA expects to award a contract for the cars by winter 2014-15, with the condition that the final assembly of the cars will take place in Massachusetts, providing further investment in the Commonwealth. Following required extensive pilot train testing, Orange Line car delivery is scheduled to begin in winter 2018-19 and Red Line car delivery in fall 2019.

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