The Land Transport Authority (LTA) today (Mar 7) announced a S$344 million contract has been awarded to Canada-based engineering company Bombardier for the renewal works at Bukit Panjang LRT. Starting the first half of 2018, the 4-year project will replace 19 LRT train vehicles and replace the existing signalling system with a new Communications Based Train Control signalling system.

Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan has previously said that the Bukit Panjang LRT was a rush job during inception due to political pressure. The Minister today said that the contract has been awarded to the incumbent manufacturer, and that SMRT will also provide them with a lucrative 10-year maintenance contract:

“After evaluating all options, LTA has decided to work with the original supplier, Bombardier (Singapore), to renew the entire network. We will also try out a new service support arrangement where SMRT will engage Bombardier through a long-term maintenance contract for spares, training and technical expertise… Bombardier will be contracted for the next 10 years to “provide more expedient technical support as well as continuous training for BPLRT maintenance staff and crew to build up expertise and improve the maintenance regime.”

A STR reader highlighted that Bombardier had severe maintenance issues during their project in San Franscisco last year.

In January this year, SMRT announced that it has outsourced all it’s rail engineering maintenance work to foreign companies as it lacks engineering expertise.

Singapore two public transport operators, SMRT and SBS Transit, have worsened their rail reliability record and further embarrassed themselves with “mystery” excuses.