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TTC changes leadership
for subway extension project

According to a memo to TTC employees from Chief Executive Officer, Andy Byford, the transit agency is making a “change in leadership within the Engineering, Construction and Expansion Group, including the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension project.”

The Toronto Star’s transportation writer, Tess Kalinowski puts it more bluntly than that in an article today, Thursday, March 19:

She writes:

“The TTC has fired the two managers in charge of the over-budget, delayed Spadina subway extension.

“The system’s chief capital officer Sameh Ghaly and chief project manager Andy Bertolo have left the TTC, according to a memo issued to staff by CEO Andy Byford about 2 p.m. Thursday.

The departures came a week after the Toronto Star revealed that the six-stop subway extension to York University is expected to cost $400 million more than its $2.6 billion budget.”

Byford’s memo to exmployees provides more details:

“Effective immediately, Susan Reed Tanaka will be acting Chief Capital Officer, leading EC&E until a permanent chief is recruited. Tony Baik will report directly to me on TYSSE on an interim basis. Please offer them both your full support.

“I would like to thank Sameh Ghaly and Andy Bertolo for their public service and commitment to the TTC over the years. Please join me in wishing them every success in their future endeavours.

“I don’t need to remind anyone of the importance of the TYSSE project to Toronto and the TTC. As CEO, I am ultimately accountable to our board and City Council for the on-time, on-budget delivery of this and all TTC projects.

“We will be bringing a report to next week’s March 26 board meeting that spells out options for a revised TYSSE schedule and costing to allow us to move forward and deliver on this project. The report will be public tomorrow (March 20) on the TTC’s website.

“In the days following next week’s board meeting, I will outline next steps around project management for TYSSE, reporting relationships, and overall expectations for this and all TTC projects.

“It has been a difficult number of weeks for the TTC, so I thank you for your continued professionalism. We are a proud organization with a long history of excellence. It is my plan to ensure that our collective reputation remains sound.

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