City Hall Flops At LRT Communications




In the post above, The Bulldog talked about what the Rideau Transit Group said about its awarding of a $180-billion contract to Alstom for 30 years of light-rail maintenance.

The Bulldog asked the city to talk with someone who knew the light-rail project and was familiar with the Alston contract. Communications got your agent no one.

Photo above: The heritage wing of Ottawa City Hall.

As for a response to the question of “was the contract sole-sourced?”, communications sent along a bunch of jibberish. It’s a wad of words that doesn’t answer the question and says nothing. The residents of Ottawa are poorly served by this and it adds to the feeling of distrust of the municipal government.

Here is the city’s response:

Hello Ken,

The following response is sent on behalf of Steve Cripps, Director, RIO

As part of the $2.1 billion design-built-finance-maintain contract with Rideau Transit Group (RTG), Alstom will be supplying 34 light rail vehicles and maintaining the system. centre/2013/2/alstom-to- provide-34-light-rail- vehicles-and-maintenance- services-for-ottawa-/

Rideau Transit Group, a world-class consortium, was announced as the successful proponent in December 2012. All contracts contained within the $2.1 billion project are negotiated and managed through the consortium.

Alstom maintenance responsibilities were expanded to include the tracks, the operating control system, the traction power substations and overhead catenary system, as well as the signalling and communications systems.   A quote from Mayor Watson was included in the News Release that Alstom issued last week: centre/2016/9/alstom-to- maintain-ottawas-light-rail- transit-system/

Regular updates on the O-Train Confederation Line light rail transit (LRT) project are available here: http://www.confederationline. ca/



The City of Ottawa should be embarrassed by this response and it shows a basic fear of telling the public what it should know about local municipal affairs.

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7 thoughts on “City Hall Flops At LRT Communications

  1. “A four-year-old could understand this. Run out and find me a four-year old. I can’t make head or tail out of it.”, said President Rufus T. Firefly ( a line in the movie – Duck Soup )

  2. In school, when a student gives a technically accurate answer to a question that was not asked, they (used to, and perhaps still do) get a failing grade. So, congratulations City Hall, another “F”.

    1. Ron:

      Yes. Why have a communications department if they are going to answer questions like that.

      Can they not put together a coherent thought?



      1. Perhaps the communications department is getting their lead from the elected officials, who often, on hearing a buzz word from their list of talking points, give their memorized response, even though it is, at best, tangential to the question posed. Some time constrained journalists (pressing deadlines, need to be first to post etc.) just accept that they aren’t going to get their questions answered, and report what they have been told. This, in turn, reinforces the inadequate behaviour of the communications department and the elected officials.

  3. I am looking forward to the day that none of these characters are at the beck and call of Watson and his councillors. If you can’t answer a plain and to-the-point question, there is definitely something rotten in Ottawa.


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