Walsh Construction has secured a $220.5m contract from Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) to build a streetcar that will operate from Santa Ana Regional Transportation Center in California, US.

The contract was awarded following a competitive bid that saw the participation of four construction firms.

The proposed OC Streetcar will operate on a 4.1-mile route between commuter rail at Santa Ana Regional Transportation Center and Harbor Boulevard in Garden Grove. It will run along various bus routes across the US.

Construction on the streetcar project is scheduled to commence later this year with testing and operations planned to be carried out by next year.

The OC Streetcar is expected to move more than 7,300 passengers on a daily basis within its first year of service.

OCTA director and Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido said: “OCTA, in partnership with Santa Ana and Garden Grove, have been planning the OC Streetcar for years and today is a great day as we look forward now to starting construction on an exciting new transportation option in the heart of the county.”

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A number of federal and state entities, as well as Orange County’s half-cent sales tax for transportation improvements, will provide financing for the OC Streetcar project, which is expected to be completed with a $407m investment.

For planning and designing the streetcar project, OCTA has been working with the US Federal Transit Administration (FTA), which is considering providing a full funding grant for the project.

If approved, the FTA grant and other federal funding are expected to cover half of the project’s cost.

In March, OCTA’s board approved a $51.5m contract with Siemens Industries to supply the vehicles for the OC Streetcar system, which will be equipped with six operating vehicles and two spare cars.