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Metra late last week posted its updated buying plan online to provide prospective vendors, contractors and subcontractors with a list of equipment, goods and services the Chicago-area commuter railroad expects to purchase within the next 12 months.The plan lists the estimated term of each contract, the anticipated timeframe for a call for solicitations and an estimated contract value, Metra officials said in a press release.The railroad updates its buying plan on a quarterly basis and posts it online as part of its efforts toward increasing transparency. The updated plan details Metra's projected purchases from third-quarter 2016 through second-quarter 2017. In addition, the plan covers contracts worth at least $40,000 and includes business opportunities for small or disadvantaged businesses."Our online buying plan makes it easy for businesses to find the information they need to submit bids," said Metra Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer Don Orseno. "It also demonstrates our pledge to providing awareness and open access to the business community in competing for contracting opportunities."