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nfitz

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So should Ottawa. They're starting construction in early 2013, completion by 2018, which puts it on a similar timeframe to many TC projects.
Waterloo is only after 14 vehicles. I'd have thought that Ottawa's was large enough that this wouldn't be such an issue. But I don't know the size.
 

timio

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It's not up to the province. In Waterloo, they got provincial funding, only after they had put up their own funding, and convinced Ottawa to put up funding as well. Mississauga hasn't tried that approach.

Ontario originally promised 2/3 of the price, and then the day after approval, Ottawa surprised everyone and promised 1/3, but then Ontario backed down and capped their total at $300M, leaving the Region of Waterloo on the hook for the approximate 1/3 that Ontario bailed out on. The delay in approval came after the Region was told they had to cover the remainder, which then became an election issue and then had to be re-studied to ensure they were getting the best value for their money. It still came out the same, more or less, in the end.
 

gweed123

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Waterloo is only after 14 vehicles. I'd have thought that Ottawa's was large enough that this wouldn't be such an issue. But I don't know the size.

I don't really know that much about the intricacies of vehicle purchases. Is there any kind of a discount for bulk purchases (i.e. economies of scale)? Or is the cost per vehicle pretty standard no matter how many you're ordering?
 

RedRocket191

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I don't really know that much about the intricacies of vehicle purchases. Is there any kind of a discount for bulk purchases (i.e. economies of scale)? Or is the cost per vehicle pretty standard no matter how many you're ordering?

Yes, there are discounts for bulk purchases but you can't really compare it to a retail experience since there's much more price and option negotiation.

The price of the vehicle includes raw material and assembly costs, development costs and the cost of tooling up the factory for production. While the costs of materials and assembling a vehicle doesn't change much as more vehicles are ordered, the development costs and tooling costs get spread out over the order. Thus, the purchase price per vehicle goes down for every vehicle added to the order.
 

gweed123

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Yes, there are discounts for bulk purchases but you can't really compare it to a retail experience since there's much more price and option negotiation.

The price of the vehicle includes raw material and assembly costs, development costs and the cost of tooling up the factory for production. While the costs of materials and assembling a vehicle doesn't change much as more vehicles are ordered, the development costs and tooling costs get spread out over the order. Thus, the purchase price per vehicle goes down for every vehicle added to the order.

Gotcha, thanks! Well Ottawa is under a hard cap of $2.1 billion. So if they can save a few bucks by piggy-backing on Metrolinx' order, I say go for it. As long as they get a few test vehicles in 2017 and the bulk of the order in 2018, it should be all good.
 

nfitz

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I don't really know that much about the intricacies of vehicle purchases. Is there any kind of a discount for bulk purchases (i.e. economies of scale)? Or is the cost per vehicle pretty standard no matter how many you're ordering?
I'd think there are lots of factors. If it weren't for the Canadian purchase requirements, I'd think that size wouldn't make that much difference. But because of it, it requires significant investment by anyone other than Bombardier, who have already bitten the bullet, and set up a production line in Thunder Bay (which essentially TTC is paying for in their order ... but with an original order of about 200 cars, with an option for I think 400 more).

I was looking at the specs. Looks like it's designed to open with about a 24-minute one-way trip, and a frequency of 3.25 minutes. If you assume a round trip, with terminal time of 55 minutes, then you need 17 train-sents. With a 120-metre train of 4 cars, and 25% spares, you need 85 cars ... increasing to 138 cars by 2031 when they talk of 2-minute frequencies.

With an opening day of 2018, that might make it difficult for Bombardier to match the current TTC/Metrolinx price, given that's the same timeframe for the TTC deliveries, and many of the Metrolinx deliveries. It may cost more for Bombardier to expand capacity - and surely temporary capacity ... Bombardier is already scheduled to delivery about 380 cars between late-2013 and 2020. On the other hand, TTC still has an option on another 100 vehicles, and Metrolinx has an option on another 200 vehicles ... so perhaps it would be in Ontario's interest to assign these.

Though, given Ottawa's desire to bid the entire thing, and also that the Ottawa requirement of a top speed of 100 km/hr, then this entire discussion is probably irrelevant.
 

gweed123

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I'd think there are lots of factors. If it weren't for the Canadian purchase requirements, I'd think that size wouldn't make that much difference. But because of it, it requires significant investment by anyone other than Bombardier, who have already bitten the bullet, and set up a production line in Thunder Bay (which essentially TTC is paying for in their order ... but with an original order of about 200 cars, with an option for I think 400 more).

I was looking at the specs. Looks like it's designed to open with about a 24-minute one-way trip, and a frequency of 3.25 minutes. If you assume a round trip, with terminal time of 55 minutes, then you need 17 train-sents. With a 120-metre train of 4 cars, and 25% spares, you need 85 cars ... increasing to 138 cars by 2031 when they talk of 2-minute frequencies.

I was wondering what the math was on that, thanks.

With an opening day of 2018, that might make it difficult for Bombardier to match the current TTC/Metrolinx price, given that's the same timeframe for the TTC deliveries, and many of the Metrolinx deliveries. It may cost more for Bombardier to expand capacity - and surely temporary capacity ... Bombardier is already scheduled to delivery about 380 cars between late-2013 and 2020. On the other hand, TTC still has an option on another 100 vehicles, and Metrolinx has an option on another 200 vehicles ... so perhaps it would be in Ontario's interest to assign these.

Don't forget though that the Western Extension is scheduled to open shortly after the first segment is complete (they just released the Interim EA a couple weeks ago). Assuming Richmond-Byron is chosen, that's another 8.5km of track to be added to the system. And the headways in the west will need to be the same as the east. So that's a significant bump in the number of vehicles required somewhere between 2020 and 2022 (if all goes according to plan).

Though, given Ottawa's desire to bid the entire thing, and also that the Ottawa requirement of a top speed of 100 km/hr, then this entire discussion is probably irrelevant.

I really don't get that top speed requirement. I don't think there's any place on the Transitway where buses hit 100 km/h, aside from the stretches through the Greenbelt. The LRTs will all be in their own ROW, so it's not like they have to meet highway speed limit standards or anything.
 

Platform 27

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Waterloo Council approved the proposal, so looks like they'll now be negotiating with Metrolinx to piggyback..

What I found interesting in the Waterloo staff report was the discussion of having Waterloo use Toronto's heavy maintenance facilities to do their overhauls and share parts ordering... although it may not be fun for the train buffs to have a common southern Ontario LRV fleet, we could start seeing some real efficiencies come about by having one, especially if Hamilton or Mississauga also join in. I could be misreading, but the Waterloo report also seems to imply they'll be looking at combining some of the Toronto and Waterloo LRV testing on Waterloo's track.
 

doady

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Mississauga should be piggybacking on this Metrolinx order...

The Hurontario-Main LRT will require at least 40 LRVs (20 trains of coupled LRVs) to provide a service with 5 minute frequency along a 39 minute long route. With such a large number of LRVs, there would probably be little if any benefit for Mississauga/Brampton to piggyback on any LRV order.
 

Hipster Duck

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Gotcha, thanks! Well Ottawa is under a hard cap of $2.1 billion. So if they can save a few bucks by piggy-backing on Metrolinx' order, I say go for it. As long as they get a few test vehicles in 2017 and the bulk of the order in 2018, it should be all good.

Hmmm. IIRC, Ottawa's LRT is entirely grade-separated - or, like Calgary/Edmonton - at least separated from running in the median of roadways. Since they're already building full stations rather than glorified streetcar stops, it would make more sense for them to have high platforms and high floor vehicles. I don't know if the Flexity has ever been released in a high floor model.
 

junctionist

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It's great to see smaller cities like Waterloo invest in the quality transit usually associated with larger cities in Canada. It sets a good precedent for similar cities and is exactly what we should be doing in order to keep urban living attractive and make growth possible in smaller cities in Canada. These cities should aim for growth with walkable, dense, and attractive communities as opposed to sprawl, which is the only way small cities seem to grow these days.
 

nfitz

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doady

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I don't think LRT makes much sense in small cities. Kitchener-Waterloo happened to have a single strong corridor, but small urban areas don't always have something like that. Even Mississauga and Brampton situation with Hurontario-Main is unusual, a suburban transit corridor that's by far the busiest even though it does not enter the central city. These kind of corridors are very rare and don't say much the applicability of LRT in small cities or in suburbs.
 

mpd618

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I could be misreading, but the Waterloo report also seems to imply they'll be looking at combining some of the Toronto and Waterloo LRV testing on Waterloo's track.

That's my reading as well. The Region of Waterloo owns a spur line, which will be part of the LRT corridor. It's planning to get LRT running by 2017 (and I think they can do it earlier), so it'll be the first place to put the Metrolinx vehicles into service and thus makes sense to do some of the first testing there.

It's great to see smaller cities like Waterloo invest in the quality transit usually associated with larger cities in Canada. It sets a good precedent for similar cities and is exactly what we should be doing in order to keep urban living attractive and make growth possible in smaller cities in Canada. These cities should aim for growth with walkable, dense, and attractive communities as opposed to sprawl, which is the only way small cities seem to grow these days.

LRT is medium-city transit, I'd say. In the case of Waterloo Region, it's expressly designed to help direct and manage growth. Other municipalities that are similarly willing to change the zoning and official plans to develop a major urban corridor can certainly follow the example.
 

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