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The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) Fiscal and Management Control Board earlier this week awarded a $279 million contract to Hyundai-Rotem for 80 new commuter-rail bilevel coaches.
Funded by the state, the additional coaches will increase seating capacity by over 14,000 seats daily, support the South Coast Rail expansion project that will restore service between Boston and southeastern Massachusetts in 2023, and replace aging, single-level coaches, MBTA officials said in a press release.
“As ridership on the commuter-rail system continues to climb, our customers have made it very clear that additional capacity is necessary,” said MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak. “This procurement method is the fastest and most efficient way to meet the growing demand and provide our riders with improved service.”
The new coaches will be a reproduction of the current bilevel fleet, with additional features such as LED lighting and the integration of positive train control.
MBTA expects the coaches will be delivered between September 2022 and June 2024.
In November, the MBTA will issue a request for proposals for a procurement of 100 bilevel coaches The first of those coaches is anticipated to be delivered in July 2024 and the last in June 2027.
The board also awarded a $41 million engineering and program management contract to WSP USA Inc., which will work with Keville Enterprises Inc. and VP Engineering Inc. on the contract.