Progress continues on Air Rail Link project

Metrolinx, the Ontario government and Infrastructure Ontario are moving forward with the Air Rail Link project with the release of a request for proposals (RFP) to the four teams short-listed to build the new three-kilometre rail line for the Air Rail Link (ARL) and a new ARL passenger station project. 

The ARL will provide an express rail service between Canada’s two busiest transportation hubs – Toronto Union Station and Toronto Pearson International Airport in time for the TO2015 Pan/Parapan Am Games. The service is expected to eliminate 1.2 million car trips in the first year of operation.

The rail line extension will branch off from the GO Georgetown rail corridor and connect to Toronto Pearson, with a new passenger station at Terminal 1 (T1) parking structure.

Over the past few months, teams from all over the world participated in a rigorous competitive request for qualifications (RFQ) process that reviewed their abilities to design, construct, and finance the rail line extension and T1 station. From this process, seven teams pre-qualified for the project and the four highest scoring ones have been short-listed to submit proposals. 

The short-listed bidders include:

  • AirLink Group: SNC Lavalin     
  • AirLINX Transit Partners: Aecon Construction and Materials Ltd. / Dufferin Construction Company                                         
  • Pearson Express: Flatiron Constructors Canada / Laing O’Rourke
  • Toronto Railway Airport Consortium (T.R.A.C.): EllisDon Corporation / ACS Infrastructure Canada / Fengate

Infrastructure Ontario and Metrolinx will evaluate the RFP submissions, select a preferred proposal, and then negotiate a final contract. The entire process will be overseen by a fairness monitor and the successful team will be announced in early 2012. A copy of the RFP is available at

Infrastructure Ontario is working with Metrolinx on procurement and delivery of the ARL line extension and T1 station components under Infrastructure Ontario’s Alternative Financing and Procurement (AFP) model, which will transfer risks associated with designing, constructing, and financing this project to the private sector. The Air Rail Link will be owned and operated by Metrolinx, an agency of the Province of Ontario.

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