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FirstGroup signs its first U.S. commuter rail contract in Texas

22 July 2016  •  Author: Katie Sadler, Digital Content Producer, European Railway Review

FirstGroup has signed its first commuter rail contract in the United States for the operation and maintenance of a commuter rail service linking Denton and Dallas counties in Texas.

FirstGroup signs its first U.S. commuter rail contract in Texas

Image: DCTA

Denton County Transportation Authority (DCTA) has awarded a contract to operate and maintain its A-train commuter rail service to First Transit, a subsidiary of FirstGroup. The award win is a first for the Group in North America.

Nine-year FirstGroup contract will begin 01 October 2016

The A-train is a 21-mile regional rail system connecting Denton and Dallas Counties in the state of Texas. DCTA has five A-train stations; two in Denton and three in Lewisville. The A-train also connects with the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) at their Trinity Mills Station in Carrollton where passengers can transfer to the DART Green Line and gain access to the Dallas-Fort Worth area. First Transit and DCTA’s new contract agreement, which covers a period of nine years with an additional five-year option, will go into effect 01 October 2016, and will earn revenues of approximately US $9m per year.

Subsidiary First Transit already has a presence in the region through a transit management contract with DCTA.

“This contract for A-train service represents an exciting new development for the Group and we welcome the opportunity to develop and share our rail expertise”

Commenting on the award win, Tim O’Toole, FirstGroup Chief Executive said, “We are very pleased that the Denton County Transit Authority has awarded us the contract for A-train service; our first rail contract in North America. This contract for A-train service represents an exciting new development for the Group and we welcome the opportunity to develop and share our rail expertise with a progressive partner such as the Denton County Transportation Authority. Our US rail team blends our significant experience in rail in the UK with North American transit expertise in both rail and bus. We look forward to building on this success as we explore further opportunities in the sector.”

Jim Cline, DCTA President said: “We’re excited to extend our partnership with First Transit to our A-train rail operations and maintenance. First Transit’s innovative solutions in rail infrastructure maintenance will enable us to provide enhanced rail services for the many communities we serve.”

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