I don't think this has been posted here before:
From the fed's buy and sell website.
Table of contents:
View attachment 390772
Parts of this had come out earlier, but this is the first time that some of us had the opportunity to read it end to end.
The big takeaways for me are
-— it pretty much signals the end of VIA Rail Canada as the integrated national operating entity we have known to date. The ”partner” will take over most of the key corporate functions including marketing and ticketing, and the maintenance and operating operations. There’s not a lot left for VIA to do as a separate operator, and there’s no business case for maintaining two parallel organizations. This change may signal the beginning of the end for longer distance services. How the “partner” would share operating facilities with a long distance train operator would be interesting.
- it’s a boil-the-ocean approach where a no-frills system could be put in place a lot more expeditiously without all the existential deliberations. Clearly government doesn’t want to be accused of overlooking anything. Some good ideas might come out of this - eg transit oriented development is mentioned - but it’s open season for scope creep and revenue mining by consultants, and at the expense of taking much longer to get the basic things done.
- no shovels in the ground before 2026…. and only if procurement stays on schedule… does that ever happen?
Quite ironic that VIA set out to propose a modest system that government would be able to swallow with minimum sticker shock, and now we are going down a much more elaborate route.