G, R lines delayed as RTD grapples with equipment issues

Posted at 6:26 PM, Nov 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-19 01:01:41-05

DENVER -- The Regional Transportation District (RTD) announced Friday that it will miss an opening deadline for major segments of its rail system.

The G line from Union Station through Arvada and the R line through Aurora will open in 2017. Both lines were expected to be operational by fall of this year.

RTD said it needs to resolve equipment problems with the R line and fix the A line crossing gate issues before the G line can open.

The issue with the crossing gates centers around timing and the wireless communication system used to predict the arrival of a train.

As a result of the timing issues, the Federal Railroad Administration has required flaggers to be stationed at each crossing location to ensure the safety of cars and pedestrians.

RTD also said it is testing new software it hopes will help resolve the issue.

"Is there an inherent organizational issue that is leading to all of these problems?" asked Denver7 reporter Marc Stewart.
"I would say no, there is not an inherent organizational problem," said RTD spokesman Nate Currey.
"What it is, is a very complicated year. Five trains in corridors opening in one year has never been done before and right now we know why. It's really challenging.  And we rather do it well and right."
In a statement to Denver7, RTD officials said the following: 
“Denver Transit Partners is responsible for financing, building, operating, and maintaining the G Line. We are committed to working with our partners at RTD to providing safe and reliable service for passengers. Positive Train Control is brand new technology, which enhances railroad safety. We will ensure the G Line opens when it is completely ready. Denver Transit Partners has no involvement in the RTD R Line.” – John Thompson, Executive Project Director, Denver Transit Partners


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