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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Updates from Ansaldo STS, GE Transportation/UGL Rail, Veolia Transport, Georgetown Rail and Parsons Brinckerhoff


• Ansaldo STS won a $767 million contract to supply rail signaling systems and related telecommunications and power supply equipment for two rail lines in Libya: the coastal line from Ras Ajdir to Sirt and the inland line from Al-Hisha to Sabha. The project, which will take 45 months to complete, includes implementing ERTMS/ETCS and GSM-R systems, which Ansaldo STS has supplied or is currently supplying in such countries as Italy (the Turin to Novara and Milan to Bologna high-speed rail lines), Spain, France, Turkey, China, the Czech Republic, United Kingdom, Sweden and Germany. Ansaldo STS partner SELEX Communications will provide the GSM-R telecommunications system.

• GE Transportation and United Group Ltd. (UGL Rail) signed a series of 10-year agreements for the sales and distribution of locomotives and associated technology and services in Australia. Under the pacts, UGL Rail will remain the Australian distributor of GE’s U.S. heavy-haul locomotives, including the Evolution® Series. UGL Rail also will continue to provide spare parts, maintenance and servicing to GE locomotives, and design and build locomotives in Australia using GE technology. About 500 locomotives from GE Transportation and UGL Rail currently are in use throughout Australia.

• Veolia Transport was awarded a 35-year operations and maintenance contract by the Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, Texas, for its light-rail transit (LRT) expansion project in Houston. The work will be performed through Houston Operation and Maintenance L.L.C., a joint venture owned by Veolia Transport and Parsons. The joint venture will operate and maintain four new corridors totaling about 20 light-rail miles, 32 stations, storage and inspection facilities, right-of-way and systems maintenance, dispatch, as well as operation and maintenance of 103 LRT, 100 percent low-floor vehicles. Initially, Veolia Transport will be responsible for planning and development services, and advising in the planning, design and integration of the rail lines, systems and maintenance facilities, and light-rail vehicles. Once revenue service begins, Veolia Transport will be responsible for all aspects of the new network.

• Georgetown Rail Equipment Co. appointed William (Wiggie) Shell president and chief operating officer, effective July 6. Since 1998, Wiggie had served the company as vice president of operations.

• Parsons Brinckerhoff has named Clifford Eby, former acting administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration, a senior vice president in the company’s Washington, D.C., office. Eby will be responsible for strategic efforts in rail and infrastructure markets, particularly high-speed rail. He has more than 36 years of executive and engineering experience within the rail industry; he also managed various business units for an international transportation consulting organization. In addition to serving as FRA acting administrator in 2008, he was the agency’s deputy administrator from 2005 to 2008.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 7/22/2009