Rail

MBCR asks judge to halt MBTA rail contract

Posted on March 6, 2014

The Massachusetts Bay Commuter Railroad Co. (MBCR), operator of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's (MBTA) commuter rail system for the past decade, asked a Suffolk County Superior Court judge to halt the award of a $4.2 billion commuter rail contract to a new entity controlled by Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Français (SNCF) and invalidate the new contract.

In its court filing, MBCR cited irreparable harm created by the MBTA’s decision to move forward with transition to a new operator while refusing to review MBCR’s formal protest in a timely manner.

MBCR’s request for an injunction follows discovery of multiple, serious deficiencies and errors found in commuter rail procurement documents made public by the MBTA following public records requests, according to the operator.

The mistakes include a $428 million understatement of actual commuter rail costs in the MBTA’s Independent Cost Estimate (ICE), which omitted costs such as guaranteed annual wage benefits worth nearly $5,000 per employee and $10 million in existing costs for parts and materials required to maintain trains. When compared with an accurate ICE, the fixed-cost bid price falls more than $500 million below the realistic price of operating the system.

Additionally, SNCF/Keolis failed to provide a detailed security plan as required by the Request for Proposals and instead offered a promise to prepare one sometime in the future.

MBCR also alleges that records provided by the MBTA also show its deputy general counsel responsible for the integrity of the procurement assisted SNCF/Keolis in an apparent attempt to conceal documentation of significant non-compliance in the SNCF/Keolis proposal. A series of emails between the MBTA and SNCF/Keolis officials — exchanged after a legally binding deadline had passed — show the attorney advised SNCF/Keolis to withdraw an inquiry from the official record that would have required public disclosure of non-compliance.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Hyperloop to build full-scale track next year

The Quay Valley, Calif. Hyperloop track will be built using HTT’s tube, capsule and station models. It will be instrumental in optimizing passenger system needs — such as loading, departure and safety considerations — to ensure Hyperloop is ready for larger-scale operation.

Keolis/MBTA make strides with commuter rail snowstorm recovery

Milestones include the completion of snow and ice removal from all platforms and critical rail switches system-wide, as well as the addition of supplemental trains, doubledecker and standard passenger cars to increase capacity and combat overcrowding.

Alstom to deliver to Sydney Citadis X05

Company is responsible for the integrated tramway system, which includes the design, delivery and commissioning of 30 coupled Citadis X05 trams; power supply equipment, including APS -ground power supply; signaling systems, the energy recovery system HESOP, depot equipment and maintenance.

Ann Arbor transit official urged MDOT not to lease railcars

In 2009, more than a year before MDOT signed a contract to lease and refurbish the double-decker railcars, which since have cost the state about $12 million, an Ann Arbor transit official told MDOT the cars were not suitable for proposed commuter rail services because they didn't meet federal requirements.

Hitachi purchases manufacturer of Honolulu's rail system

Finmeccanica owns all of AnsaldoBreda, which is unprofitable, and 40% of Ansaldo STS, which is profitable, according to the report. The two Ansaldo companies formed a joint venture, Ansaldo Honolulu JV, to design and build the 20-mile, 21-station elevated train system for Oahu under a $1.4 billion contract.

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

Please sign in or register to .    Close