Waterloo Regional Council approved an agreement Wednesday between Metrolinx and Bombardier Transportation (TSX:BBD.B) for the purchase of 14 light rail transit vehicles for an estimated $92.4-million.
Production of the 56-seat low-floor vehicles will begin next year and be delivered beginning in the summer of 2016. Each of the vehicles has a capacity to transport more than 280 passengers.
The first stage of the Ontario region’s transit plans include a 19-kilometre route between Conestoga Mall in Waterloo and Fairview Park Mall in Kitchener, with a rapid bus system to Cambridge.
A second stage would eventually increase the system to 37 kilometres and include 23 stations between the two cities, about 100 kilometres west of Toronto.
The project is being financed by the federal, provincial and regional governments.
The cost includes $61.1-million for the vehicles, plus $6.5-million in spare parts, $7-million in tools and equipment, taxes, currency exchange and $11-million in contingencies.
Final assembly of the vehicles will take place at Bombardier’s production facility in Thunder Bay, Ont.
The regional municipality can also exercise options for 14 additional light rail vehicles.
It will be the third customer of the Flexity Freedom vehicles after the Toronto Transit Commission, which purchased 204 units and Ontario’s transit agency Metrolinx, which ordered 182 vehicles.
Bombardier has more than 3,500 trams and light-rail vehicles in service or on order around the world in cities such as Geneva, Zurich, Berlin and Brussels.