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Railroad executives say the city's promotion to open the LRT in October 2018 is a "utopian" dream.

Judge William Hooligan's former hearing committee marked the midpoint of an investigation into the construction and operation of the Confederation Line on Friday.

Friday afternoon testimony at the inquiry included reference to an improperly torqued bolt that was blamed for a September 2021 derailment that shut down the LRT for nearly two months. A shift change at the maintenance yard meant the train was returned to service without proper inspection.
Inappropriate for testimony in the Friday afternoon survey Included was a reference to tightened bolts. The derailment in September 2021 was accused of closing the LRT for nearly two months. The shift change in the maintenance yard meant that the train was back in service without proper inspection. Photo: Tony Caldwell/Post Media

On time, Ottawa's Confederation Line provides revenue services Inquiries to the problematic train were heard on Friday, unlike what the director of the LRT construction team, who pressures to start, has never experienced.

"The level of attention from the media and politicians is so strong that I have never experienced it before," Matthew Slade said on Friday, Commissioner of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit. I testified on the 10th day of the meeting.

Slade has held several senior positions during the project, including managing the schedule and director of the Ottawa Light Rail Constructor. He is involved in many similar projects, including the construction of a new line on the London Underground in England.

"It was clear from the meetings with the councilors and city officials that there was much more pressure than we had seen in other projects," said Christine Mainville, co-chief attorney for the Commission. In response to the question, Slade said.

"Reading news articles, watching the media, seeing what's happening, some people are very vocal about providing the project and schedule, and the project ends. It was clear that he promised to provide the service. A specific date, "he said.

"Are you referring to the mayor's office?" Mainville asked.

"Yes, it's the mayor's office," he replied.

"Specifically, the mayor." Asked the main building.

"Yes."

The first witness on Friday was the committee before Judge William Hooligan marked the midpoint of the investigation into the construction and operation of the Confederation Line. ..

Slade explained how early analysis suggested that the LRT was ready to open in March 2019, but the city started in November 2018. I pushed to set. In the utopian world. "

" The stars will have to be aligned, "he told the committee.

In fact, the system wasn't ready for testing until August 2019 and wasn't open to passengers until September 14, 2019.

Slade testified that he urged the city to consider a "partial launch" that would only run trains in the east between Blair Station and the University of Ottawa. , John Manconi, was out of control when he proposed it to the general manager of OC Transpo at the time.

"It was another flat refusal," Slade said. "I didn't even give a five minute floor to have a conversation."

Later, Slade urged the city to consider a "soft launch" with full train service. , The time has been reduced from 8am to 4pm. For example, to reduce stress on the system and give more time to deal with problems. He said it was also rejected.

"I can't think of opening a rail system without a soft opening," Slade said.

In the afternoon testimony, train maker Alstom's Jan Liu was burned by Ottawa city lawyer Sharon Vogel about the derailment that plagued the system. Vogel asked Liu about the improper torque bolt that shut down the LRT for nearly two months due to the September 2021 derailment. The shift change in the maintenance yard meant that the train was back in service without proper inspection.

"It is correct that Alstom's lack of oversight of the renovation work at that time was correct," Vogel said.

"Looking back, that's right," Liu agreed.

The query will resume on Monday.

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