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MALAYSIA: Travellers who are planning for their next adventure are now able to purchase KLIA Ekspres tickets on Tripcarte.Asia, a homegrown online travel platform that allows travellers to book tours, travel activities such as boat riding and cruise, theme park and attraction tickets and watersport activities across Malaysia and Singapore.

Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd’s (ERL) Chief Executive Officer, Noormah Mohd Noor said, “We are delighted to partner with Tripcarte.Asia to bring the very best of Malaysia to travellers from abroad. With Tripcarte.Asia, travellers abroad can now plan their holiday and book their travel arrangements, including KLIA Ekspres tickets, on a single platform.”

A Malaysia based online activity platform, Tripcarte.Asia was founded and launched in 2015. With more than 300+ holiday activities, travellers are able to book attraction tickets online, allowing them to skip the queue and access their favourite attractions on the go. As a homegrown brand, Tripcarte.Asia continuously looks for partners to reach a common goal of turning Malaysia into a more popular holiday destination. Tripcarte.Asia currently offers attractions and tours in Kuala Lumpur, Langkawi, Melaka, Penang, Johor, Perak, Pahang, Port Dickson, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore.

Tripcarte's Chief Executive Officer, Parthiven Shan said, "We believe with this partnership, leisure and business travellers travelling to Malaysia will find it extremely convenient to plan and make their bookings prior to their trip. KLIA Ekspres will be an ideal way to showcase the excellent connectivity Malaysia has to offer to travellers."

Customers planning their next adventure will be able to purchase KLIA Ekspres tickets on Tripcarte.Asia starting 23rd April 2019. For more details, visit www.tripcarte.asia.

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USA: The Regional Transportation District (RTD) and commuter rail concessionaire Denver Transit Partners (DTP) marked a milestone the first week of May, with ridership reaching 20 million passengers on the University of Colorado A Line. RTD’s first commuter rail line has covered more than 8 million miles between downtown Denver and Denver International Airport since it began carrying the public in April 2016.

The celebration comes on the same day as RTD, Uber and Masabi launch Uber Transit ticketing, enabling Denver riders to be the first in the world to seamlessly buy tickets and ride transit – all from the Uber app. Following a staggered rollout over the next few weeks, all Uber riders in the Denver metro region will be able to buy RTD tickets through the Uber app and then use their phone to ride rail and bus services.

Purchasing transit tickets via Uber will cost the same as through existing options. Transit ticketing has been enabled using Masabi’s Justride SDK, a mobile ticketing software development kit (SDK) for public transportation, creating a seamless passenger experience combining transit and new mobility.

“This exciting next phase of RTD’s collaboration with Uber is yet another way our transit agency is leading the dialogue about mobility strategy, not just for the Denver metro region but for cities across the globe,” said RTD CEO and General Manager Dave Genova. “This project broadens our reach and stays at pace with the public’s needs, allowing people to plan and pay for trips from start to finish.”

“For the first time ever, taking an Uber trip can mean taking public transit,” said David Reich, Uber’s Head of Transit. “We are excited to expand our collaboration with RTD and Masabi to make Denver the first city in the world where riders can purchase transit tickets and ride public transit seamlessly through the Uber app. With this step, we are moving closer to making Uber's platform a one-stop shop for transportation access, from shared rides to buses and bikes.”

“We know convenience is the number one reason people choose a transit option, and we truly believe that a multimodal public and shared private approach will be a key part of encouraging more people to take fewer private car journeys, reducing congestion for all,” said Brian Zanghi, Chief Executive Officer at Masabi. “By making public transit tickets available through Masabi’s Justride SDK in the Uber app, we are making this a reality for the first time, helping more people seamlessly and conveniently discover and access public transit services. The future of mobility in our cities relies on innovative agencies like RTD taking the right approach and ensuring that public transit is at the core of the emerging mobility ecosystem, and we’re confident more cities will follow their lead.”

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USA: Virgin Trains USA, formerly Brightline, announced the closing of $1.75 billion in private activity bonds (PAB) to help fund the company's expansion to Orlando. Morgan Stanley was the underwriter for the transaction that was purchased by 67 different investors.

With the closing of the sale, Virgin Trains USA has the necessary funds to begin construction for service to Orlando, including 170 miles of new track to a state-of-the-art intermodal facility located in the new South Terminal at the Orlando International Airport. Construction will begin imminently and is expected to be complete in 2022.

The rail construction between West Palm Beach and Orlando is expected to have a significant economic impact in the State of Florida, including the creation of more than 10,000 jobs and is anticipated to generate more than $650 million in federal, state and local tax revenue. The project is 100 percent privately financed and represents a total investment of $4 billion.

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AUSTRIA: Due to renewal work on the runway at Salzburg Airport from 24 April until the end of May 2019, all flight service to and from the airport will be suspended during this period. For this reason, Austrian Airlines is offering expanded travel options by train between Salzburg’s Central Station and Vienna Airport. The existing AIRail offering in cooperation with the Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB) will be increased tenfold from three to up to 30 daily train connections until one week after the shutdown of the runway. Accordingly, a Railjet with an Austrian Airlines flight number linking Salzburg and Vienna will be available to passengers every hour between 5 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. 

Austrian Airlines customers receive various advantages, for example a guaranteed connection, regardless of whether their journey continues by plane or train. This means that in the case of an unexpected delay of the train or flight, passengers will be automatically booked on an alternative connecting service if they do not reach their train or flight on time. Business Class passengers travel in first class on the train and are also given free access to the ÖBB lounge before departure. Moreover, passengers can collect miles on AIRail route within the context of the Miles & More program. Finally, there is also a catering voucher, which can be used in the ÖBB dining car. Travel time between Salzburg Central Station and Vienna Airport amounts to 2 hours 49 minutes. 

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USA: Jacobs has been selected as the principal design consultant for the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) Cotton Belt Regional Rail Corridor Project. The 26-mile project extends between Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) International Airport and Shiloh Road Station in Plano and will connect to three existing DART light rail lines.

As the principal design consultant to the Archer Western Construction, LLC and Herzog Contracting Corporation joint venture for the project, Jacobs will provide design and oversite services for track alignments, drainage, bridges, retaining walls, stations and signalling for the design-build project, which is anticipated for completion, with revenue service, by 2022. DART estimates the contract value at $1.1 billion.

The Cotton Belt Project will provide passenger rail connections and service to improve mobility, accessibility and system linkages to major employment, population and activity centers, as well as support sustainable growth and local and regional land-use visions.

In addition to the existing Orange, Green and Red DART lines, the Cotton Belt project will also connect to the Trinity Metro TEXRail, a 27-mile regional commuter line between DFW Airport and downtown Fort Worth, for which Jacobs previously served as program manager.