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Bombardier admits it might miss TTC streetcar target this year

NEWS STAFF | posted Thursday, Jul 13th, 2017

New TTC streetcars in Toronto. CITYNEWS/Diana Pereira
There were supposed to be 70 new streetcars on Toronto tracks by the end of the year, but Bombardier now admits reaching that delivery target is going to be a “challenge.”

The Quebec-based company — which is already in a legal dispute with Metrolinx over its ability to fulfill train orders in Toronto — said it informed the TTC about the problem on Tuesday.

“In all transparency, yesterday Bombardier informed the TTC months ahead that there is a potential challenge to meeting the full target of 70 streetcars for 2017,” spokesman Marc-André Lefebvre said in a statement.

“This is a potential, very limited, short-term issue. This does not mean Bombardier will not reach its target for 2017.”

The company said it’s taking “extraordinary” measures to have the streetcars ready, including extending the work week at its Thunder Bay plant from five to seven days, adding resources at all of its sites, and flying rather than shipping streetcar cabs from Vienna to save the month in transportation time it would take by sea.

“All cards are on the table. No stone will be left unturned,” Lefebvre said.

Bombardier will cover the cost of the extra resources, including the $750,000 Antonov flights, “to reinforce our commitment to the TTC and Toronto transit riders.”

TTC CEO Andy Byford said the company is to blame for the delay.

“I understand that it’s difficult, but they have got themselves into this position,” he said.

Bombardier said it’s still on track to deliver the entire fleet of 204 streetcars by the original contract deadline of 2019.

The TTC has received 40 new streetcars and was supposed to have a total of 70 by the end of the year, according to Bombardier’s revised schedule. Next year, 76 new streetcars are to be delivered, and in 2019, the TTC should receive the remaining 58 streetcars.

Related stories:

Metrolinx appealing court loss over $770M contract with Bombardier

Metrolinx to buy LRT vehicles from Alstom in shot against Bombardier

Metrolinx can’t cancel Bombardier contract: Ontario judge


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