FirstGroup lands first US rail operating contract

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    First Transit, a subsidiary of UK bus and train operator FirstGroup, has been awarded its first contract to operate rail services in the USA.

    From October, First Transit will take over the operation of Denton County’s A-train commuter rail network – a 34-kilometre system which links the counties of Denton and Dallas.

    The nine-year contract, which is worth an estimated $9 million a year, includes a five-year extension option.

    The A-train network has five stations – Eulene Brock Downtown Denton Transit Center, MedPark Station, Highland Village/Lewisville Lake Station, Old Town Station and Hebron Station. It also calls at Trinity Mills Station in Carrollton, providing a connection to the DART Green Line into Dallas.

    Announcing the contract award, FirstGroup chief executive Tim O’Toole 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.”

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