September-October: People & Places

Sept. 14, 2018
The latest industry and people news and updates.


Salesforce Transit Center Opens

The Salesforce Transit Center celebrated its long-awaited grand opening August 11, starting with a formal ribbon-cutting before a public party, and culminating with inaugural Transbay bus service. The ribbon-cutting was held in the Grand Hall, a bright hub that gleams all the way from its 20,000-square-foot terrazzo floor — an underfoot mural by artist Julie Chang featuring California birds and flowers — up to a four-story elliptical oculus skylight.

At the mid-level bus deck, transit agencies from around the Bay showcased a range of contemporary and vintage buses, spanning time from a fabulously retro pickle-and-mustard-colored 1958 Key System bus to a brand-new, double-decker AC Transit bus that could go into service on certain transbay routes by the end of this year.

Valley Metro and Waymo Announce Partnership

Valley Metro and Waymo joined forces to introduce a new partnership that will help drive the future of transportation. Using Waymo’s self-driving vehicle technology, Valley Metro will participate in a pilot that can be modeled across the country.

The event to announce the partnership occurred amidst two Waymo vehicles on either side of a light rail train at the Valley Metro Rail Operations and Maintenance Center in Phoenix.

Valley Metro will begin utilizing the self-driving vehicle technology for first- and last-mile transit trips in September.

Metro Awards Contract for New Bus Facility in Virginia

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has awarded a contract for the maintenance and operation of buses from its new Cinder Bed Road bus facility in Lorton, Virginia, in a move expected to control cost growth while delivering quality service and preserving current employees’ jobs.

The contract, which is expected to add 140 new jobs, was awarded to TransDev. The contract includes a mobilization period prior to the facility opening in December, three base years, and two, one-year options.

Quebec Orders Nearly 500 More Electric-Hybrid Systems from BAE Systems

BAE Systems has announced that the Association du Transport Urbain du Quebec (ATUQ) ordered 497 electric-hybrid buses using the BAE Systems Series-E electric drive propulsion system. The five-year contract includes an option for up to 1,028 additional systems.

The ATUQ consortia is focused on implementing sustainable, green technologies and is using BAE Systems’ series electric-hybrid system as a step to achieving their goal of fully-electric systems in the future.

UTA/DART Transportation Leadership Academy Celebrates Successful Inaugural Year

Dallas Area Rapid Transit’s partnership with the University of Texas at Arlington provides real-world learning opportunities to develop students into tomorrow’s leaders in the transportation industry. In addition to emphasizing key themes, the academy addresses a guiding aspiration of UTA's strategic plan: to provide a meaningful internship to each student prior to graduation. Officials are adding a paid summer DART internship to the academy's plan in its second year.

First American-Made Autonomous Vehicle Permanently Deployed on Open Roads in Canada

Keolis Canada and the city of Candiac, with the manufacturer NAVYA, financial support from the Québec Government, the collaboration of Propulsion Québec, the Cluster for Electric and Smart Transportation and the Technopôle IVÉO, announced the first long-term demonstration project of an electric autonomous shuttle on public roads in Canada. The NAVYA Autonom Shuttle will operate in mixed traffic; this is a first step towards integrating autonomous shuttles into shared transportation solutions, in addition to complement the existing transport offer.


The Corpus Christi Regional Transportation Authority is excited to provide an updated look to its vanpool, a program providing groups of people to utilize a carpool service originating or arriving in the CCRTA urbanized area.

The Greater Richmond Transit Co. announced the appointment of interim chief executive officer Charles Mitchell, who will oversee the transition between CEOs.

Following a formal bid recompete process, Dallas Area Rapid Transit renewed its contract with AlphaVu to provide social media data mining and social listening services for another two years, with two additional option years available. The base contract award is $249,000.

Stertil-Koni announced it will again sponsor National Lift Week, which will take place Oct. 8 - 13 in venues across North America to advance safety and performance.

Mountain Line registered another year of record ridership, surpassing Fiscal Year 2017 ridership by more than 17 percent.

BYD Canada has been awarded orders for nine long-range, zero-emission, battery-electric buses by the Société de transport de Montréal and the Réseau de transport de Longueuil.

Transit riders on the BaltimoreLink system will see new additions to the Maryland Transit Administration’s bus fleet as 70 clean-diesel New Flyer XDE40 Xcelsior buses hit the streets this summer.

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced the Blue Line will undergo a comprehensive $350-million modernization beginning in January 2019 to improve reliability, enhance safety and improve the customer experience.

Brookville Equipment Corp. celebrated its 100th Anniversary on Friday, August 3, with nearly 800 guests, employees, families of employees, friends, suppliers, and industry members in attendance.

The Conference of Minority Transit Officials announced Palm Tran Executive Director Clinton B. Forbes as winner of the prestigious Gerald Anderson Service Award during the 2018 Industry Awards Banquet in Baltimore, Maryland.

Thirteen Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority operators were recognized on Tuesday, July 31, during the authority's Third Annual HART Million Mile Safe Driver Awards Luncheon in honor of those who achieved outstanding safety milestones in safe driving and service.

Palmetto Breeze launched a new mobile ticketing application for riders, the BreezePass.

Louis Berger has entered into an agreement to join WSP.

Italo - Nuovo Trasporto Viaggiatori and Alstom signed a contract worth $375 million for the purchase of five additional Pendolino EVO trains, exercizing an option to the contract signed in October 2015.

The Jacksonville Transportation Authority Board of Directors approved an Interlocal Agreement with the Nassau County Council on Aging, Inc. for express route service to start in December, which will enhance regional mobility for one of the fastest growing areas in Northeast Florida.

Canadian actor, comedian, writer, producer, and director Seth Rogen has lent his voice and talent to a series of quirky public service announcements focused on etiquette and courtesy while riding the TTC.

The voters of Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township expressed their strong support for public transportation services by overwhelmingly voting to renew and restore a 0.7 millage transit levy.

People in the News

Paul Brown

Bombardier Transportation

Bombardier Transportation announced senior rail industry leader Paul Brown as the new managing director for its operations in Australia (ad interim). As managing director, Brown will focus on the competitiveness of Bombardier’s operations in Australia with priorities including strengthening stakeholder relations, delivering projects and services to the highest standards, as well as business development and securing new business in a highly competitive market.

John DiValentino

Urban Engineers

Urban Engineers announced that John DiValentino, P.E., has been promoted to vice president and director of strategic operations. He has been with the firm for 18 years and previously served as the firm’s deputy director for facility construction management. This new role comes with the responsibility of planning and implementing the firm's overarching development goals and vision across the firm.

Luke Olson

LORAM Maintenance of Way Inc.

LORAM Maintenance of Way Inc. appointed Luke Olson to the position of vice president sales & marketing. In his new role, Olson will have responsibility for all aspects of LORAM’s contract services sales and marketing efforts, along with new and existing product development initiatives. He started his career with the company in 2003 as international marketing coordinator then his most recent role, director rail grinding.

Sarah G. Boden


DemandTrans announced the appointment of Sarah G. Boden to president and chief operating officer. Boden, currently CTO, will oversee day-to-day operations of the company and continue to drive the technology strategy. She has held leadership positions in companies large and small, and has deep experience in the transportation industry as the president of the Transit Division of DDS Wireless and the deputy executive director and COO of Access Services of Los Angeles.

Mark Elias

First Transit

First Transit announced the appointment of Mark Elias as region vice president of operations. In this role Elias will focus on operations in the Northwest region. He has more than 15 years of transportation experience in areas such as operations management, finance, legal, labor negotiations, technology innovation, customer engagement and leadership. He most recently was chief operations officer at Tire Disposal & Recycling. Prior to that, he was with MV Transportation Inc.

AlphaVu 5947fc017f204


Feb. 4, 2016
Urban Engineers
Urb Eng Logo 11306841

Urban Engineers

Jan. 30, 2014