Utilities – to divert or to not divert?

The need for utility relocation on LRT schemes has been a major issue for promoters in Canada, the US and Great Britain but less so in continental Europe, where many utilities remain public owned,Ai??for decades.

The Cardinal has received details of the project costs for the Waterloo, Ontario Light Rail project;




that demonstrates how utility diversions areAi??driving up the costs of light rail.

For the 19 km scheme, the projected cost is $818 million, giving a route Km cost of $43 m

The figures are:

Hard Costs
Property Acquisition$18 M
Civil Works$106 M
Staging/Enabling Works$69 M
Maintenance Yard$52 M
Parking; Park and Ride Lots$16 M
Structures$38 M
Utility Relocation$86 M
Stations$22 M
Traction Power$22 M
Hydro Supply$3 M
Substation Electrical$17 M
Line Electrical $3 M
Signals$17 M
Communications and Supervisory Control Data and Data Acquisition (SCADA) System$14 M
Soft Costs
Engineering Design$48 M
Construction Management$39 M
Design Support (Construction)$9 M
Construction Change Order Contingency $48 M
Agency Costs$29 M
Project Reserve$48 M
Program Management$14 M

Vehicle Costs
Capital Vehicle Costs (2016)$100 M


Utility relocation is by far the most expensive single item in the budget, almost 1/8 of the total. if this could be addressed in a satisfactory manner it could significantly lower capitalAi??costs.


One Response to “Utilities – to divert or to not divert?”
  1. Andrew Dawson says:

    The only time there is a need to do any diverting is when there are things like man holes on the surface, other than that, there is no reason why you can’t just dig 12-20 inches down to lay track.