High-level, world-class expertise to help integrate the REM de l'Est into Montreal's urban landscape

Chantal Rouleau, Minister for Transport and Minister Responsible for the Metropolis and the Montréal Region, Harout Chitilian, Vice-President, Corporate Affairs, Development and Strategy at CDPQ Infra, and Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montréal, have announced the creation and members of the multidisciplinary committee of experts for the architectural and urban integration of the REM de l'Est. Chaired by Ms. Maud Cohen, P.Eng., President and Chief Executive Officer of the CHU Sainte-Justine Foundation, the committee is composed of 15 people who are recognized by their peers in their respective fields.

The Montréal-based architectural firm Lemay, known for its transdisciplinary and sustainable projects in Québec and internationally, was also selected to develop, together with the committee of experts, the architectural charter and prescriptive guidelines that will govern the integration of the REM de l'Est in downtown Montreal and along the entire route. The Montréal public will be asked to comment on and improve the options proposed as part of the review process.

The work of the independent expert committee is part of the detailed planning phase of the project, designed to improve and optimize it. Reports resulting from this work will be published by the end of the year. The consultation process set up by CDPQ Infra will take place simultaneously, and also give the public an opportunity to obtain information and give their opinions on the many aspects of the project.

"The arrival of the REM de l'Est marks a turning point for Montréal. We will give new momentum to sustainable mobility in the east end of the city by relying on local talent and know-how to provide us with an infrastructure that will contribute positively to the urban fabric through innovative design, in harmony with the surroundings. The committee unveiled today is composed up of independent experts from different backgrounds who specialize in various fields such as development, heritage, urban art, active transit and so on. I am convinced that they will be able to ensure a seamless integration of the largest public transit project in the history of Quebec. Thus, the REM de l'Est will be a source of pride for the people of Montréal, and a source of inspiration around the world."

Chantal Rouleau, Minister for Transport and Minister Responsible for the Metropolis and the Montréal Region
"We committed to establishing a committee to ensure that the urban and architectural integration would make it a signature project. We fulfilled that commitment by creating a committee of very high-level experts who will be an asset to the project's success. We all want this high-performance infrastructure to be harmoniously integrated into the neighbourhoods that will benefit from this new service."

François Bonnardel, Minister of Transport and Minister Responsible for the Estrie Region
"Our ambition is to make the REM de l'Est a collective project that will make everyone proud. We know we can achieve this by working together with the public, independent experts, leading professionals and relevant authorities. Our desire is to develop an exceptional integration approach that is specific to the REM de l'Est. The committee will have the authority to contribute to the development of a high-level, world-class architectural vision that will make the city shine."

Harout Chitilian, Vice-President, Corporate Affairs, Development and Strategy at CDPQ Infra
"The REM de l'Est is a golden opportunity to offer the people of Montreal's east end a modern, efficient and comfortable public transit system that will help revitalize this area full of potential. However, this opportunity comes with the important challenge of ensuring that the project is successfully integrated into the neighbourhoods it will serve and pass through. The City of Montreal has indicated from the outset that it wants urban and architectural integration to be a priority, from the design of the project to its completion. I am confident that the committee of experts has the right people in place to identify solutions and make this major project a success. "

Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montréal
"I sincerely believe that in the face of any challenge, there are always solutions. You have to be open, thorough, creative, but also daring. We have the talent to fulfil today's design mandate. We are all excited to get started."
 

Maud Cohen, Chair of the multidisciplinary expert committee on urban and architectural integration for the REM de l'Est
"We are embarking on this project with the conviction that we can have a part in creating inspirational and sustainable living environments that will make the people of Montréal proud. We know the value of a cross-disciplinary approach that draws on the expertise of each individual. We look forward to working as a team with the committee of experts, the public and CDPQ Infra in developing the design and urban integration guidelines for the REM de l'Est."

Louis Lemay, President and Architect, Lemay

Highlights


• The REM de l'Est will consist of 8 km of underground rail and 24 km of elevated rail. The structures, particularly those in the René-Lévesque Boulevard corridor in the downtown area, will receive special attention in terms of their architectural treatment, to ensure they receive a modern and symbolic aesthetic for this nerve centre of Montreal.

• The committee unveiled today will rely on its members' complementary fields of expertise to ensure the REM de l'Est is successfully integrated into the urban landscape. The committee is composed of the following individuals:
o Maud Cohen, President and Executive Director, CHU Sainte-Justine Foundation, and Chair of the multidisciplinary expert committee on the urban and architectural integration of the REM de l'Est
o Mouna Andraos, Co-founder, Daily tous les jours art and design studio, Interim Executive and Artistic Director, Society for Arts and Technology, and Adjunct Professor, Design and Computation Arts Department, Concordia University
o Frédérick Bouthillette, Assistant Deputy Minister, Strategic Public Transit and Rail Projects, Ministère des Transports
o Rose Lindsay Daudier, Executive Director, Fusion jeunesse
o Marie Elaine Farley, President and Chief Executive Officer, Chambre de la sécurité financière, Board Member, Réseau de transport métropolitain (EXO)
o Luc Gagnon, Director of the Service de l'urbanisme et de la mobilité, City of Montréal
o Éric Gauthier, Senior Partner, FABG Architects
o Ken Greenberg, Director of Greenberg Consultants, urban designer, professor and author.
o Eric Millette, Architectural Conservation and Integration Consultant, CONTEXTURE
o Paula Negron, Ph. D., Associate Professor at the School of urban planning and landscape architecture, Université de Montréal
o Christian Savard, Executive Director, Vivre en Ville
o Monique Simard, cultural producer and manager, Chair of the Board of Directors, Quartier des Spectacles Partnership, Chair of the Board of Directors, Fonds Québecor, and Chair of the Board of Directors, Vitrine culturelle
o Stéphanie Trudeau, Executive Vice President, Québec at Énergir and Chair of the Board of Directors at Gaz Métro Plus, Énergir, chaleur et climatisation urbaines (ECCU), the Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec (FCCQ) and Soupe pour elles
o Jean-Paul Viguier, President and Founder of VIGUIER architecture urbanisme paysage
o Christian Yaccarini, President and Chief Executive Officer, Société de développement Angus

• The committee of experts' role is to support, with help from the architectural firm Lemay, the REM de l'Est project office in defining the guiding principles of the architectural signature, urban integration and development of the REM de l'Est in downtown Montréal and along the entire route.

• The committee will initially meet monthly, beginning in May 2021, through the end of the year, and then remain active thereafter throughout the project. Once recommendations have been tabled and the architectural design is publicly unveiled, it will continue to monitor the progress of the detailed design that will be developed by the consortium selected as a result of the request for proposals process. All of the committee's opinions will be included in a report that will be made public prior to the BAPE public hearings. CDPQ Infra will also publicly unveil the architectural design chosen for the project.

• The REM de l'Est is one of the projects targeted by the major process underway to revitalize Montréal-Est. Increased mobility, decontamination of strategic sites, economic development and improvement of the quality of life of citizens are the priorities identified in the Declaration for the revitalization of Montréal-Est, in which the Government of Québec and the City of Montréal committed to consolidating a common, integrated and innovative vision.

  • On December 15, 2020, CDPQ Infra, along with the Government of Québec and the City of Montreal, announced the REM de l'Est. This new public transit project, consisting of 32 kilometres of light rail and 23 new stations, will meet a historic demand in the East, connecting the Pointe-aux-Trembles and CÉGEP Marie-Victorin areas to downtown Montréal.
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    For the third consecutive year, VIA Rail is the most trusted transportation company

    VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) has been recognized as one of the most trusted companies in Canada in 2021 by the Gustavson Brand Trust Index (GBTI), presented by the Peter B. Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria. The Corporation ranked first in the "Transportation" category for a third year in a row. Since 2015, the GBTI has been investigating overall consumer trust in brands, the factors that affect it and the brands that succeed at it. Comprising top researchers in their fields, the GBTI team emphasizes the role of brand values as part of its study of nearly 400 brands across the country.

    "Despite the challenges faced since the beginning of the pa ndemic, we are humbled by the unwavering trust that Canadians have granted us for the third consecutive year. This accomplishment would not have been possible without the dedication and exemplary work of our employees," says Martin R. Landry, Chief Commercial Officer. "Not only does this vote of confidence reinforce the crucial role of passenger rail, it also drives us to work together and carry out our mission of putting passengers first. At VIA Rail, we are committed to enhancing our customers' travel journey by continuously improving our services, and offering the safest, most accessible and reliable experience. We believe this can only be achieved by listening to and integrating the needs of Canadians in our everyday decisions."

    About the Gustavson Brand Trust Index

    The Gustavson Brand Trust Index is provided by the University of Victoria's Gustavson School of Business. Nearly 9,000 Canadians were consulted between January 13 and February 8, 2021 on the way they view certain brands, including their consumer advocacy and social equity.

    Source : VIA Rail Canada

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    REM de l’Est enters its public consultation phase

    As it committed to do following the announcement of the REM de l'Est project, CDPQ Infra is now inviting the public to share their views through a broad public consultation and is continuing its active meetings with various stakeholders and civil society representatives, with over fifty meetings held to date.

    Evaluated at $10 billion, the REM de l'Est represents the largest amount ever invested in a public transit project in Québec and a significant tool that will contribute to revitalizing the north and east ends of Montreal. Following 18 months of analysis, the reference project was presented in December 2020. The process announced today will allow to continue the work and the detailed planning of the project by going to meet the population and thus contribute to its optimization and its improvement.

    This process will offer many opportunities for citizens to express their views on the REM de l'Est project, in a variety of formats designed to reach the greatest number of participants. It will be based on listening and openness and will be rigorous, inclusive, and transparent. It will also be supported by the participation of the City of Montreal, the Government of Quebec and the ARTM. CDPQ Infra reiterates its hope that these initiatives will take the REM de l'Est project to the desired level of excellence.

    " The REM de l'Est is a major project and we know that its success depends on a period of active listening and discussion with the public. In December 2020, we introduced a transportation network that has the potential to transform mobility in the east and help revitalize this great territory. Today, we continue this work by launching a broad consultation process to ensure that we hear and gather input from the public. We hope that Montreal's east end residents will take ownership of the project and that, through this process, we are able to improve and optimize it thanks to their contribution. "
    Jean-Marc Arbaud, President and Chief Executive Officer of CDPQ Infra
    "Today, we are extending an important invitation to the public. The REM de l'Est project is still in the planning phase and it can be improved on. Is the time to make yourself heard, ask questions and participate in a collective success story."
    Virginie Cousineau, Public Affairs Manager, CDPQ Infra, and REM de l'Est Spokesperson
    A variety of ways to learn more and to weigh in

    Four formats will be made available to the public so they can learn more, ask questions and share their ideas.

    VIRTUAL INFORMATION MEETINGS
    For more information about the project and to ask questions

    May 10, 12 and 13 (noon, morning and evening, respectively)

    During the information meetings, CDPQ Infra representatives will present the project and respond to questions from the public along with experts from CDPQ Infra and project partners including the Ville de Montréal, the Ministère des Transports du Québec and l'ARTM.

    Register and learn more about these meetings.

    Please note that the information sessions will be recorded and made available on the CDPQ Infra website.

    WEBINARS
    To delve deeper into the specific topics

    The route : May 19 at noon
    Mobility : June 9 at noon

    In addition to information meetings, webinars will be held in May and June to further explore two topics that have sparked public interest: the route choice and the project's mobility objectives.

    The REM de l'Est project has raised many questions since its announcement and now is the time to continue the reflection process and improve our understanding of the project's principles.

    Register and learn more about these workshop

    These workshops will be presented by CDPQ Infra experts, project partners and independent observers.

    CONSULTATION SESSIONS
    To weigh in and provide feedback

    From May 27 to June 10

    Sectoral virtual consultation sessions will take place in order to gather comments and recommendations from members of the public.

    During these consultations, the public will be invited to form sub-groups and work with a facilitator on specific topics linked to the sectors. These topics will be listed and prioritized during the event by the participants and the facilitator.

    Learn more about these consultation sessions

    ONLINE CONSULTATION PLATFORM
    To share your opinion at any time

    Lastly, if individuals are unable to participate in the proposed sessions, they can share their opinion on a digital consultation platform which is available online.

    This platform will allow them to pin their comments on a route map, submit ideas on virtual Post-it notes and cast their vote in surveys.

    AVAILABLE DOCUMENTATION
    To learn about the project

    As of today, it is possible to consult various documents and reports on the REM de l'Est as part of the consultation process.

    New documents, reports and analyses will be published on a regular basis and over the coming months, to provide the public with a complete and transparent understanding of the project.

    RESULTS OF THE PUBLIC CONSULTATION AND PARTICIPATION IN THE BAPE

    A report on all the recommendations submitted by members of the public will be made available on the CDPQ Infra website at the end of summer 2021 and a review of the retained ideas will be presented by the end of 2021.

    The REM de l'Est project will then be submitted to the Bureau d'audiences publiques sur l'environnement (BAPE) for review in 2022. During this process, members of the public will once more be able to stay up to date and share their opinion on the project.


    The public is invited to consult the new online section for information and consultation meetings and subscribe to our newsletter to receive updates.
    Follow the project on Twitter: @CDPQInfra.

    Source : CDPQInfra

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    Memo: O-Train Stage 1 and Stage 2 Quarterly Memo to Council (Q1 2021)

    The following memorandum outlines the milestones achieved on the O-Train Stage 1 Confederation Line, Stage 2 Confederation Line and Trillium Line extension projects in Q12021and provides an overview of the planned work for Q2 2021.

    Source : City of Ottawa

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    Stage 2 LRT - West Extension - ​Kitchissippi Ward - Information Session - April 29, 2021

    Kitchissippi Ward Councillor Jeff Leiper, along with members of the Stage 2 LRT team, held a virtual information session, to discuss the Western extension in Kitchissippi Ward of the Confederation Line, as well as upcoming work that is planned. 

    Stations covered include Westboro, Kichi Sibi (Dominion) and Sherbourne. 

    This video was recorded from the Zoom informational session held with the community and is archived on Rail Fans for informational purposes.

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    Stage 2 LRT - West Extension - Bay Ward - Information Session - April 27, 2021

    Bay Ward Councillor Theresa Kavanagh, along with members of the Stage 2 LRT team, held a virtual information session, to discuss the Western extension in Bay Ward of the Confederation Line, as well as upcoming work that is planned. 

    Stations covered include Sherbourne, New Orchard, Lincoln Fields, Queensview, Pinecrest, Bayshore and Moodie Stations, in addition to the Moodie LMSF. 

    This video was recorded from the Zoom informational session held with the community and is archived on Rail Fans for informational purposes.

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    Transit Commission Meeting - April 21, 2021

    The Transit Commission received an update on Confederation Line and Bus Service.

    Source : City of Ottawa

    ----------

    Rectification plan:

    • Work-related to switch heaters, overhead catenary system, vehicle traction power, vehicle passenger doors, vehicle HVAC is complete;
    • Work continues on vehicle auxiliary power (CVS units) and on the fine-tuning of vehicle braking systems;
    • As previously mentioned, all completed works are subject to validation through ongoing independent assessment;

    Additional works:

    • Final preparations to conduct seasonal trackwork are underway, temporary service adjustments this spring/early summer may be required;
    • Coupler inspections and all associated works are complete on 20vehicles, the remaining vehicles are planned to be completed within the next month; and,
    • 11 train schedule implemented in March will be extended for three additional months (May, June and July).

    Train Wheels

    • Wheelreplacements ongoing; period of low ridership continues to be leveraged to accelerate wheel replacement schedule;
    • Daily inspections of fleet ongoing until all wheels replaced and/or set screws are adjusted;
    • Inspection and replacement work proceeding at both sites; and,
    • Independent TSB investigation continues; all required parties are engaged, including Chief Safety Officer, RMCO, wheel and metal experts, Transport Canada.

    Ridership

    • Ridership in March 2021 was at 26% of usual levels;
    • We anticipate lower ridership in April and early May with the current stay-at-home order in effect; and,
    • We continue to monitor ridership and will make adjustments as necessary.

    OC Transpo proposes evaluation criteria to guide potential future transit service reductions and provides updates on 2020 performance measures

    The Transit Commission today approved a report outlining OC Transpo's recommended transit service evaluation criteria if transit service cuts are required in the future. The report provides next steps if Council directs OC Transpo to make cuts to transit services and provides specific criteria that staff will use to assess all potential service cuts.

    The City's transit budget is expected to be largely covered by the combined result of $30 million in operating savings and up to $90 million in capital budget adjustments that were included in the City's 2021 budget, plus $135.3 million in funding expected from the federal and provincial governments. The service cut criteria could be required if lower transit ridership continues into 2022 because of COVID-19, and if the resulting loss of fare revenue is not covered by the federal and provincial governments.

    The report identifies several factors to consider when exploring closing the funding gaps through transit service cuts, including impacts on disadvantaged groups, impacts on essential mobility, the ability of the transit system to return to 2019 levels and greater in the future, and impacts on the mobility and urban design goals approved by Council in the Transportation Master Plan and the Official Plan.

    The report's recommended criteria when selecting any required service cuts emphasize the need for customer consultation in selecting cuts that provide the greatest savings while impacting the fewest customers, all while retaining a good and useful citywide transit service. The criteria emphasize that service cuts should be avoided where they have a disproportionate impact on vulnerable populations, and that all cuts should be reviewed through the City's equity and inclusion lens.

    OC Transpo also provided the first of its twice-annual performance reports for the period from January 2020 to December 2020, following Transit Commission's approval of OC Transpo's performance reporting metrics at the Commission's meeting on February 17, 2021. These performance metrics include customer safety, ridership, customer service, and service reliability.

    To better track customer safety, the Transit Commission approved the addition of two measures: the crime rate on the transit system and the rate of injuries requiring treatment by paramedics but not requiring transport to hospital.

    The Transit Commission received an update on O-Train Line 1 and bus service operations. Train service reliability remains high, and preparations for upcoming track work are underway. The 11-train peak-period service schedule that was implemented in March will be extended until the end of July. Ridership in March was at 26 percent of usual levels and is expected to remain low until the current stay-at-home order and school closures end.

    Finally, Transit Commission passed a motion by Councillor Glen Gower, directing the Commission Chair to write to Ottawa's Medical Officer of Health, with a copy to the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario, to emphasize the role of transit workers in enabling essential work to continue in the City of Ottawa, and ask that this be shared with the Ottawa Vaccine Sequencing Taskforce.


    Audio from the Meeting

    Transit Commission meeting - April 21, 2021.mp3

    O-Train Line 1 & Bus Service Update


    OC Transpo Performance Measurement and Reporting Period Ending December 2020


    Transit Service Evaluation Criteria

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    TransLink launches next round of engagement to shape the future of transportation

    TransLink is launching a new round of engagement for Transport 2050, the region's transportation blueprint for the next 30 years. After a record-breaking 31,700 responses during the first phase of engagement, we are launching a second engagement for the 30-year plan and asking for more specific feedback on key transportation priorities.

    From April 19 until May 14, we are asking the public for their opinions on the following priorities and recommendations which were developed based on Phase 1 responses:

    • Creating urban spaces that support active transportation
    • Developing the optimal rapid transit network that is fast and frequent
    • Integrating automated vehicles efficiently into the transportation system

    Once engagement has concluded, TransLink will take the results from both phases of engagement and create a draft 30-year transportation plan. That plan will be released later this year to gather more feedback from the public, our government partners, and key stakeholders before it becomes final. Once finalized, Transport 2050 will be the next major long-term transportation strategy that outlines regional transportation priorities for the next three decades.

    Members of the public are invited to participate in engagement in the following three ways:

    • Through an online survey
    • By using our online Q+A tool
    • By attending one of four Virtual Open Houses

    Visit transport2050.ca to take part. For anyone with feedback specifically about building rapid transit to UBC, visit the Millennium Line UBC Extension page, as it's part of a separate engagement.

    Quotes:

    Gigi Chen-Kuo, TransLink Interim CEO –

    "I am thrilled that TransLink has adopted one of the Vancouver-Fraserview Transit Working Group's recommendations for improved service. This investment in our community will ensure commuting remains affordable and transit is accessible for seniors and young families, all while reducing congestion and carbon pollution."

    George Heyman, BC Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy –

    "People in Metro Vancouver expect and need high-quality, affordable transportation options that support action on climate change and strong, healthy communities for everyone. Our government is committed to continuing our support and development of better public transit and active transportation that help shape healthy communities for decades to come. Feedback from this public engagement help us make informed decisions that will build a more sustainable and accessible province for all British Columbians."

    Jonathan X. Coté, Chair of the Mayors' Council on Regional Transportation –

    The long-term transportation strategy is the foundation the Mayors' Council uses to make major transportation investment decisions. The region recently completed nearly everything that was outlined in Transport 2021, which was possible because of critical long-term planning from 30 years ago. I was excited to see that Phase 1 saw responses from people throughout the region, and we need that continued enthusiasm from the public as we map out the next 30 years of transportation."

    More Information
    Source : TransLink
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    Stage 2 LRT - East Extension - Information Session - April 15, 2021

    East-end Councillors, along with members of the Stage 2 LRT team, held a virtual information session, to discuss the Eastern extension of the Confederation Line, as well as upcoming work that is planned. 

    Stations covered include Montreal, Jeanne d'Arc, Convent Glen, Place d'Orleans and Trim Stations. 

    This video was recorded from the Zoom informational session held with the community and is archived on Rail Fans for informational purposes.

    The presentation is first, followed by the connectivity study below it.


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    Transit-Oriented Development in Ottawa with Alain Miguelez, Manager of Policy Planning at the City of Ottawa - April 2021

    Transit-Oriented Development in Ottawa with Alain Miguelez, Manager of Policy Planning at the City of Ottawa - April 2021 -
    Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) is a form of urban development, which maximizes the number of residential, business, commercial, and leisure spaces within walking distance of public transportation.
    In this April 2021 discussion with Alain Miguelez, Manager of Policy Planning at the City of Ottawa, we discuss Transit-Oriented Development in Ottawa. 

    Areas discussed include: 

    • What is TOD. How are we building TOD in Ottawa. 
    • What are we trying to achieve in Ottawa. 
    • Underground City or RESO. 
    • TOD Proximity to Stations. 
    • Large condo and tower developments in Ottawa.
    • Official Plan and how to get involved and engaged.
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    Côte-Vertu garage project: Côte-Vertu station to close from May 29 to August 22 for track switch installation

    As part of the Côte-Vertu garage project, the Société de transport de Montréal must close Côte-Vertu station from May 29 to August 22, inclusive, in order to install a track switch ahead of the station. This switch will increase train frequency by up to 25% on the Orange line at peak periods. Mitigation measures will be implemented to minimize inconveniences caused by the station closure.

    While the station is closed, the STM will conduct work that cannot be performed while the station is operational, including:

    • Track removal and excavation of the invert
    • Installation and commissioning of the track switch
    • Addition of signalling equipment

    Launched in 2017 and 77% complete, the Côte-Vertu garage project involves building an underground garage to house ten additional métro trains, as well as three above-ground buildings needed to operate the garage.

    The balancing out of the number of train storage spaces at each end of the Orange line will provide operational flexibility for adding trains, support the expected growth in ridership in the coming years and increase the offer of service to keep pace with the extension of the Blue line.

    The garage commissioning is planned for 2022. The other work to be completed includes:

    • Construction of three above-ground buildings
    • Finalization of concrete work
    • Installation of equipment needed to operate the garage
    • Installation of tracks and switches
    • Exterior landscaping

    With a $492.3M price tag, this major project is funded by the governments of Québec and Canada.

    Project details: Côte-Vertu | Société de transport de Montréal (stm.info)

    Mitigation measures

    Shuttle 810: Special high-frequency bus line linking Côte-Vertu and Du Collège stations

    Bus 64 Grenet: Regular line extended to Du Collège station, in addition to buses 17 Décarie and 72 Alfred-Nobel, which already serve both stations

    Bus 470 Express Pierrefonds: Regular line rerouted to Du Collège station, with addition of bus-to-bus transfer stops

    Customers with limited mobility are invited to use buses 64 and 17 during the closure. These lines will stop at the north entrance building of Du Collège station, which is equipped with elevator service.

    As the stations are approximately 900 metres apart, active transportation may also be used.

    Additionally, shuttle 968, which was put in place as part of the REM project for the closure of the Mont-Royal tunnel, will be rerouted to De La Savane station from May 29 to August 22. Afterwards, it will return to Côte-Vertu station.

    Virtual information session

    Residents who wish to learn more about the project or the station closure can attend a virtual information session on April 27, 2021. To register: Côte-Vertu | Société de transport de Montréal (stm.info)

    Key facts about Côte-Vertu station

    • Sixth-busiest station in the network
    • Nearly 30,000 boardings per weekday (pre-pandemic)
    • Over 8,215,000 boardings per year (pre-pandemic)
    • 23 bus lines, including 19 STM lines, 3 STL lines and 1 exo line
    Source : STM
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    VIA Rail announces resumption of the Toronto-Winnipeg portion of the Canadian

    VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) announces that it will be providing additional essential intercity transportation options by resuming the Toronto to Winnipeg portion of the Canadian which will enable one full round-trip per week starting May 17, 2021.

    Route Service
    Vancouver-Toronto One weekly full trip starting May 17
    Toronto-Vancouver One weekly full trip starting May 23

    The resumption was made possible following a thorough evaluation of VIA Rail's health and safety protocols, including physical distancing measures, enhanced air ventilation system, and improved measures for passenger access and the protection of its employees. More details regarding health and safety measures as well as the modified services offered on board the Canadian are available on VIA Rail's website.

    "Over the past year, we have continuously sought to find a balance between offering to the best of our abilities essential travel options while following the guidelines and recommendations from public health authorities, as well as federal and provincial governments. With health and safety at the heart of our actions, the resumption of one full weekly round-trip service on the Canadian allows us to continue to provide an essential service to Canadians needing to travel on this route," said Cynthia Garneau, President and CEO.

    VIA Rail continues to deploy a strict protocol of sanitary measures on board its trains, in its stations, maintenance centres, call centres and offices to deal with the pandemic and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Teams across the organization also continue to apply the latest health and safety guidelines and are evaluating VIA Rail's overall service offering in the context of the pandemic. Fully aware that there is currently an increase in COVID-19 cases, in the event of major changes related to the health crisis by the set resumption dates, VIA Rail will revise its service offering in line with the latest developments.

    The Corporation will continue to work on a safe resumption plan, collaborating with public health authorities, as well as the federal and provincial governments to ensure this occurs as soon as conditions permit. This plan will be shared once finalized.

    FLEXIBILITY FOR PASSENGERS

    All passengers with reservations affected by this resumption of service will be contacted and reimbursed automatically. To facilitate cancellations and refunds, VIA Rail has extended its cancellation policy to include all travel through September 15, 2021, to allow passengers to cancel their upcoming reservations autonomously online at any time prior to departure and receive a full refund in addition to not incurring any service charges, regardless of when the ticket was purchased.

    Alternatively, customers may contact the VIA Customer Centre by email at service@viarail.ca or by phone at 1-888-VIA-RAIL (1-888-842-7245), TTY 1-800-268-9503 (hearing impaired). Due to the current situation related to COVID-19, the VIA Customer Centre is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern Time, seven days a week, and it may take some time to speak with an agent due to a reduction in staff.

    REMINDER

    Wearing a mask is required at all times in VIA Rail's stations and on board VIA Rail trains. For the health and safety of all passengers and employees, passengers who do not wear a mask during their trip will be required to disembark the train or will be refused entry upon boarding.

    Wearing a mask over the nose and mouth is one more way to protect one another and will help VIA Rail safeguard the travel experience of its passengers and employees. Throughout the pandemic, when VIA Rail has ramped up service levels in the Québec City-Windsor corridor, all enhanced health safety measures introduced during the pandemic have been maintained, including enhanced cleaning, pre-boarding screening of travellers, modified onboard services.

    Furthermore, VIA Rail constantly reminds its passengers and employees of the importance of following the recommendations of public health authorities, to avoid non-essential travel, practice physical distancing as much as possible, and to rigorously follow good hygiene practices (wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, cough or sneeze into a tissue or the bend of the arm, avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth without first washing their hands).

    Passengers will be denied boarding trains if they are experiencing symptoms similar to a cold or flu (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) or if they have been denied boarding for travel in the last 14 days due to medical reasons related to COVID-19.

    The most recent updates are available on VIA Rail's website.

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    TTC to close portion of Line 1 for 10 days to accelerate system improvements

    Based on the success of two previous 10-day closures, the TTC is once again taking advantage of reduced ridership to advance essential system improvements and upgrades that will minimize customer inconvenience in the longer term.

    Beginning at 6 a.m. on Mon., April 12, the TTC will close the portion of Line 1 between St George and St Andrew stations to carry out tunnel lining repairs, asbestos removal, station cleaning, and track upgrades.

    This closure in the downtown "U" will eliminate several years' worth of early access and weekend closures in this section of Line 1. Similar successful closures were carried out in December 2020 and March 2021, allowing the TTC to accomplish more than two years' worth of work in 10 days.

    The closure will last 10 days, with regular service resuming at 6 a.m. on Thurs., April 22.

    "We are getting this work done now during the pandemic so that there will be less disruption in the future when our economy has fully reopened," said Mayor John Tory. "These upgrades are needed to ensure we continue to have a safe and reliable transit system - a crucial part of our economic recovery. I want to thank all of our TTC workers who have kept the system running throughout the pandemic while also ramping up our repairs and upgrade plans."

    The TTC continues to capitalize on reduced ridership during the COVID-19 pandemic and identify opportunities to carry out vital state-of-good-repair work with minimal inconvenience to customers.

    "By accelerating this critical state-of-good-repair work, we are limiting the need for station platform closures and reducing future disruption for transit riders," said TTC Chair Jaye Robinson. "The TTC's innovative approach to major capital work during the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in significant cost and time savings. I want to thank Toronto transit riders for their patience and understanding as we work to improve our transit infrastructure and service for years to come."

    During the last 10-day closure in March, TTC crews made significant advancements on electrical work and upgrades to traction power, asbestos removal, and station floor and platform upgrades.

    Customers can expect shuttle bus service every 60 seconds or better during peak periods and very consistent service to continue throughout the day. Service levels have been designed based on current customer volumes. Designated pick-up and drop-off locations will be outside each station, at street level.

    If travelling into the city, customers are encouraged to start their journey at Finch Station, or at any other station on the Yonge side of Line 1, to avoid the closure area.

    "We are taking every opportunity to speed up infrastructure improvements while keeping customer inconvenience to a minimum," said TTC CEO Rick Leary. "There's never a perfect time to close portions of the subway, but we know from speaking to our customers that 80 to 90 per cent are supportive of us doing this work now while ridership is lower."

    East-west service will be available, as usual, on College (506 Carlton), Dundas (505), Queen (501) and King (504) streets, for customers to connect from Yonge St.

    Museum, Queen's Park, St Patrick and Osgoode stations will be closed during this work. Customers should note that all subway entrances/exits will also be closed, including TTC connections to hospitals. St George and St Andrew stations will remain open for fare sales and connection to surface routes and Line 2.

    Customers who require Wheel-Trans service can speak with any TTC customer service staff member for assistance.

    From Mon., April 19 to Thurs. April 22, service on the portion of Line 1 between Sheppard West and Lawrence West stations will also end at 11 p.m. nightly for leak remediation work and to prepare for track switch upgrades. A following 10-day closure will be held from April 26 - May 5 from Sheppard West to Wilson for switch installation and replacement.

    More information on this early closure and alternate service will be released next week.

    Customers should remember that face coverings are mandatory while travelling on the TTC. More information on how to wear a mask properly is available online. Some exceptions apply.

    The TTC is using a variety of tactics to ensure customers are aware of this extended closure and to minimize the inconvenience as much as possible. Customers looking for more information or assistance planning their trips are advised to visit ttc.ca or call Customer Service at 416-393-4636.

    The TTC thanks its Board, local City Councillors, and the essential workers based along University Ave., for their assistance and patience with this closure.

    The TTC is committed to keeping customers informed about work and events that impact service and about alternate routes. For the most up-to-date information, follow @TTCNotices on Twitter or sign up for eAlerts.

    Source : TTC

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    East York site selected for Ontario Line maintenance and storage facility

    The train maintenance and storage facility, a critical component of the Ontario Line, will be built on a 175,000-square metre site. Once completed, it will become the central location for the upkeep, repair and resting place for the subway trains, when they're not busy helping move people around Toronto.

    After several months of study and assessment, Metrolinx has selected a location for the Ontario Line maintenance and storage facility.

    This critical component of the new subway will be built on a site east of Laird Drive, between Overlea Boulevard and Wicksteed Avenue. It's where Ontario Line trains will be stored when they're not getting people across the city and where they'll be inspected, cleaned, and maintained so that they're ready to take riders to their destinations.

    "Confirming the location of the maintenance and storage facility is an important step in bringing the vision for the Ontario Line to life," says Metrolinx project sponsor Malcolm MacKay.

    "When the facility goes into service, the work that happens there will help us give customers rapid transit that is safe, clean and reliable."

    Just like any other public transit operation, the maintenance and storage facility will be a vital organ for the Ontario Line. An estimated 200 train cars will be needed to meet Toronto's needs when the Ontario Line opens, and the fleet will grow by as many as 50 more vehicles to meet demand for service in the future. To house and maintain the trains, Metrolinx needs a site of 175,000 square metres – that's about the size of 24 soccer fields.

    "Unfortunately, this amount of vacant land just doesn't exist in the city," says MacKay.

    "We want to protect jobs and businesses as best we can, so we looked at a number of different options and weighed all of the potential impacts. We feel confident that the decision we've made comes with the least amount of impacts to the community while still providing an essential piece of Ontario Line infrastructure."

    After exploring nine potential locations for the facility, the site in the southeast portion of the Leaside Business Park was selected because studies showed that it keeps impacts to the local community to a minimum while meeting all the needs for the project, including proper zoning for industrial use. Planning teams studied how quickly and easily each site would connect to the main Ontario Line tracks, the ability to expand to meet Toronto's future transit needs, and how impacts on residents, businesses, and the surrounding environment could be minimized – both during construction and after the maintenance facility goes into service.

    Minimizing impacts to businesses, employees and residents is a Metrolinx guiding principle, right alongside bringing major transit improvements to underserved neighbourhoods.

    Here's an example of what the Eglinton Crosstown Light Rail Transit MSF looks like, with its many tracks leading in and out. (Metrolinx photo)

    Laboring over design decisions and keeping construction and building footprints as slim as possible is one of the ways Metrolinx does this. With a dedicated property team, Metrolinx also works with property owners and tenants to support their relocation, if needed. Decisions and strategies differ from property to property, and each case is considered independently.

    "We're challenging ourselves to go the extra mile to come up with creative solutions..."
    Jason Ryan, Metrolinx VP of pre-construction services.

    "We care about the communities we serve and we know how important local businesses are to them," says Jason Ryan, vice president of pre-construction services for Metrolinx.

    "Given the difficulties many of them have been facing recently, we'll be challenging ourselves to go the extra mile to come up with creative solutions – a suite of customized supports to help them adjust, and hopefully relocate nearby if they wish."

    In all cases, Metrolinx works directly with any owner whose property needs to be acquired to understand their needs and to reach amicable purchase agreements that provide them with fair market value.

    Ryan explains: "We recognize that each business is different, and we'll be doing all that we can to provide tailored supports that will ensure they can continue to thrive."

    Members of the community are invited to ask questions and share their feedback on plans for the Ontario Line Maintenance and Storage Facility in an upcoming virtual open house. Open house event details will be shared on Metrolinx.com/OntarioLine in the coming days and participants will be able to register in advance.

    Participants can register in advance by visiting Metrolinx.com/OntarioLine. For those unable to attend the live event, there will be an opportunity to submit questions ahead of time. This virtual open house, the first of many to come for neighbourhoods along the Ontario Line alignment this spring, will specifically cover topics and questions related to area surrounding the maintenance and storage facility and the areas of Thorncliffe Park and Flemingdon Park.

    "Community feedback is vital in helping us continue to move the project forward in the best way possible and to help us know how we can help you throughout the course of the project," says MacKay.

    To get the most up-to-date information on the project and to share your feedback, you can visit Metrolinx.com/OntarioLine. There, you can sign up for our e-newsletter and submit questions and comments through our engagement portal.

    Story by Sara Wilbur, Metrolinx senior advisor, Capital Communications - Subways

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    STM presents its 2020 Annual Report a year filled with challenges

    Following the adoption of the document by the Board of Directors, the Société de transport de Montréal (STM) is marking the end of a truly extraordinary year with the publication of its 2020 Annual Report. The Report details three major crises: the out-of-service bus issue, the COVID-19 pandemic and the October cyber attack on the company.

    "2020 was a truly extraordinary year, and not only because of the enormous challenges our teams faced in responding to the effects of the global pandemic. Throughout 2020, all of our teams had to resolve a number of other problems unrelated to COVID-19, while continuing to work toward our annual company objectives and surpassing the financial targets set by the Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain. For all their incredible hard work, agility and versatility, we sincerely thank our employees!" said Luc Tremblay, Chief Executive Officer of the STM.


    Providing services during the pandemic
    In January 2020, the STM began directly addressing the issue of out-of-service buses by implementing exceptional measures to optimize the number of buses available and, consequently, ensure an adequate service offering for customers. The rate of out-of-service buses continued to improve, dropping from 33% to an overall 19.2% for the year.

    Despite the circumstances, the bus service delivery rate reached a record 99.6%. Meanwhile, thanks in large part to the reliability of métro equipment and rolling stock and a reduction of incidents involving sick or injured customers, the STM achieved a rate of only 9.2 incidents of five minutes or more per million kilometres—the best seen in a decade.

    Projects moving us forward
    Additionally, the STM implemented a strategy to add 300 new hybrid and electric buses to its fleet with the goal of improving customer experience. Several phases of the five-point strategy have now been completed:

    • In 2019, the STM finished converting an industrial building that had been leased by the STM for five years to house 50 buses.
    • Also in 2019, the St-Denis bus garage roof was refurbished to extend its useful life, and the garage was reopened in January 2020.
    • Work continued on the expansion of three existing bus garages—Anjou, Legendre and St-Laurent—to house a total of 160 new buses. In 2020, the project reached a new milestone with the completed expansion of the Legendre bus garage, now able to house 56 of the new buses. Work on Anjou and St-Laurent will be finished in spring 2021.
    • The construction of the Bellechasse bus garage, which began in 2019, will continue until 2023. In 2020, excavation work was completed on the vast area that comprises the future bus garage.
    • Important progress was made on the project to build a bus garage, planned for commissioning in 2025, in the east end of Montréal. A new step was taken in 2020 with the finalization of the selected group of designs.

    COVID-19 pandemic
    In accordance with public health guidelines, the STM implemented several health measures in late February that required hard work from employees and an adjustment for customers. These measures included:

    • Increasing the cleaning frequency for buses, métro cars and stations
    • Rolling out telework for corporate departments and project teams
    • Changing the customer flow on buses: using the front door for boarding and the back door for exiting, except for customers using wheelchairs, and keeping the seat behind the driver empty at all times
    • Installing a total of 395 hand sanitizer dispensers throughout the métro network
    • Reassigning administrative and professional employees to help clean facilities and equipment
    • Providing buses to be used as mobile testing clinics
    • Having maintenance employees install over 2,000 Lexan protective screens for bus drivers, in record time
    • Distributing 1.5 million face coverings to customers and ensuring easy access to face coverings within networks
    • Installing new signage in some métro stations to minimize instances of customers passing one another
    • Providing occupancy levels for buses and Orange line AZUR trains
    • Rolling out debit/credit terminals in all métro stations to provide customers with a safe and contactless way to pay at fare booths

    Cyber attack
    On October 19, 2020, the STM was the target of a cyber attack that employed a highly sophisticated, heavily automated variant of the RansomExx computer virus. Within four hours of the attack, the internal IT team was able to identify and isolate the affected systems and, within two weeks, have them back up and running. Meanwhile, neither bus nor métro services were affected by the attack.

    Ridership
    The year 2020 saw 171.7 million trips taken within the regular STM network, a 54.2% decrease from 2019. As of March, the pandemic had a major impact on transit user travel habits. Still, the company started 2020 out strong, registering a 5% ridership increase in the first two months of the year. In April 2020, ridership hit its lowest point of the year at only 14% of the level recorded for the same period the previous year.

    The pandemic also affected paratransit ridership, with 2 million trips taken on the STM's Transport adapté compared to 4.4 million in 2019. This tumultuous year nonetheless marked an important milestone in the history of Transport adapté as it celebrated its 40th anniversary.

    Customer experience

    The customer approval rate rose from 65% to 70% in 2020, an encouraging result given the circumstances of the past year. There was also a 53% decrease in total complaints compared to 2019, most likely due to the significant drop in ridership caused by the pandemic.

    FULL REPORT IN FRENCH CAN BE VIEWED HERE

    Source : STM

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    O-Train Improvements and Enhancements with Pat Scrimgeour, Director of Transit Customer Systems and Planning - March 2021

    O-Train Improvements and Enhancements with Pat Scrimgeour, Director of Transit Customer Systems and Planning - March 2021 -

    Ottawa's O-Train system continues to move forward with improvements and enhancements to better serve and support customers and passengers. 

    In this March 2021 interview with Pat Scrimgeour, Director of Transit Customer Systems and Planning, we discuss some of the improvements and enhancements that are being undertaken on the O-Train. 

    Areas discussed include work to allow fare gates at stations and Presto readers on buses directly accepting credit cards and mobile payments, OC Transpo Presto and STO Multi Card usage on each-others networks, Real-Time Information Improvements, Station Retail, Advertising in Stations and Trains, Improvements to customer service involving the social media channels of OC Transpo.

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    TransLink completes modernization of 1980s-era SkyTrain technology

    TransLink has replaced aging speakers and signs on the SkyTrain system by installing 280 new customer information screens and over 1,400 new speakers at Expo and Millennium Line SkyTrain stations. These upgrades have modernized communication on the SkyTrain system and improved TransLink's ability to communicate with customers. Expo and Millennium Line customers will notice:

    Real-time digital screens

    • Outdated signs have been replaced by new "next train screens" on platforms and station entrances to let customers know when their next train is expected to arrive.
    • General information screens have been installed to simplify customer decision making with live service information and updates.

    Better sound in stations and on trains

    • New speakers on trains and at stations for customers to more clearly hear service alerts and notifications.

    Improved safety and security at stations

    • Over 1,200 new CCTV cameras installed along the Expo and Millennium Lines. These cameras can be monitored live by SkyTrain staff to modify service levels throughout the day and are a valuable resource for Transit Police investigations.

    These upgrades have been ongoing since 2018 as part of our SkyTrain Customer Communications Upgrades Program, and is a major milestone to deliver enhanced customer experiences through the Customer Experience Action Plan.

    This $79 million program is part of a larger $92.4 million Rapid Transit Systems Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project paid for under the Public Transit Infrastructure Fund (PTIF), which is funded by the Government of Canada (50 per cent), the Government of British Columbia (33%), and TransLink (17%).

    Quotes:

    The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Member of Parliament for Delta, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities –
    "With new speakers, screens, and security cameras, TransLink users will now be safer and better informed while commuting. I'm pleased that these improvements are funded in part by our federal government through the Rapid Transit Systems Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project. Canada's infrastructure plan invests in thousands of projects, creates jobs across the country, and builds cleaner, more inclusive communities."

    George Heyman, BC Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy and the Minister responsible for TransLink –
    "SkyTrain users now have much better real-time travel information during their journeys. Modernizing TransLink's customer communications is an important investment in both service and safety."

    Jonathan X. Coté, Mayors' Council Chair –
    "Keeping transit an excellent alternative to driving by improving rider experiences is a critical part of the Mayors' Vision. The signs and speakers on the Expo and Millennium Lines were outdated and replacing them is extremely important for SkyTrain customers. Retrofitting the communication tools at Expo and Millennium Line stations so riders can see and hear real-time information will help to make transit an even more attractive option for people returning to the system in the coming months and years."

    Gigi Chen-Kuo, Interim CEO, TransLink –
    "Communication and information is a vital part of a customer's experience on transit and this program has modernized our SkyTrain communication technology. We've replaced the 1980's style LED signs and aging speakers with state-of the art information screens and brand-new speakers all over the Expo and Millennium Lines. These upgrades have modernized our system and mean that our customers returning to transit will be welcomed back with much clearer communication technology."

    Source : Translink

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    Environmental assessment for the Ontario Line – A thorough review

    This image shows how landscaping could be used to enhance space near the existing rail tracks, next to Jimmie Simpson Park. The exact location, height and design will be confirmed as planning work continues. (Metrolinx image)

    As the Ontario Line proceeds through its environmental assessment (EA) process, experts are looking at potential effects on the environment, investigating and suggesting ways to limit them, and considering feedback from residents before a single shovel hits the ground for any proposed work. EAs are a critical step in all major infrastructure projects and the Ontario Line is certainly no exception. This process gives local residents a voice, as the new line is planned and designed to fit into the communities it will serve.

    New rail lines change their surroundings.

    While additional transit options are always a welcome change, the infrastructure and the operations that support them take some getting used to. That's why – before shovels can go into the ground – plans are designed to keep community impacts to a minimum while striving to offer maximum benefits.

    The environmental assessment (EA) process provides a foundation for this important work.

    "The EA process ensures that any potential environmental, economic, social and cultural effects that may occur during the lifetime of a major project are thoroughly assessed," said Carrie Sheaffer, Metrolinx Senior Manager, Environmental Programs and Assessment. "It ensures that regulators and public bodies review and consider thorough assessments before construction can begin on an infrastructure project."

    This creates an opportunity for the public to get involved.

    "A big part of the EA process is the consultation," Sheaffer said. "Engaging and obtaining feedback from ministries, Indigenous communities and members of the general public is integral to the process with requirements clearly spelled out in our EA regulations."

    "Residents are consulted throughout and given opportunities to comment. That feedback is very important, we carefully consider it and appropriately address the comments we receive."

    "Our team will figure out what works best to mitigate noise and vibration while also fitting seamlessly into the project." Carrie Sheaffer, Metrolinx Senior Manager, Environmental Programs and Assessment

    Metrolinx News has already reported on how feedback from the first round of open house meetings in early 2020 is being applied to the Ontario Line design.

    WHAT AN EA INCLUDES

    The EA process reviews a broad range of impacts.

    "Typically, you look at the natural environment as one aspect and there is also the built environment," said Maria Zintchenko, Metrolinx Project Manager for Ontario Line EAs. "It also includes factors such as community amenities, traffic patterns, cultural heritage, archaeology, infrastructure and utilities.

    "You get a comprehensive view of how a project fits into that environment, what the impacts are, and how to lessen those impacts. This makes for an all-inclusive assessment."

    There are unique challenges to consider before building transit lines in a densely populated city like Toronto.

    "We know the longstanding history of the city and its buildings," Zintchenko said. "The built environment and cultural heritage are important in Toronto, and everywhere."

    Of course, one issue presents a natural first question for people that live along a proposed transit line.

    NOISE AND VIBRATION

    "Noise and vibration is also an important factor," she noted.

    Starting with the use of proven track and vehicle technologies that meet high standards, Metrolinx has a wide range of tools available to address noise and vibration along the route.

    This image shows how landscaping could be used to enhance space near the existing rail tracks, next to Jimmie Simpson Park. The exact location, height and design will be confirmed as planning work continues. (Metrolinx image)

    Metrolinx has determined that noise walls will be installed along the existing GO rail corridor through Riverside and Leslieville area. Metrolinx has already begun studying projected noise and vibration levels along the Ontario Line. Early study results show that a noise wall in this area will not only be effective in significantly reducing noise from the Ontario Line, GO Transit and VIA Rail trains, but will reduce noise below what it is today at many locations along the corridor.

    Wherever possible, noise walls will be surrounded by trees, plants and attractive landscaping to enhance the appearance of the space for the community. This approach will soften the appearance of noise walls that will shield the area from the new Ontario Line as well as existing GO and VIA services.

    Final noise wall designs will be subject to future studies as well as robust consultations with the City of Toronto and local community as part of the EA process.

    MORE TOOLS IN THE CHEST

    Noise walls will not be the only part of the plan.

    The toolkit also includes options such as rail dampers, continuously-welded rail, ballast mats, floating slabs, resiliently supported rail ties and highly resilient fasteners. All of these have been proven effective on transit lines around the world.

    "Our team will figure out what works best to mitigate noise and vibration while also fitting seamlessly into the project," Sheaffer said.

    An EA is required for all large-scale infrastructure projects that could impact their surroundings. For transit projects across the province, they are required to follow a process set out in a regulation in order to proceed. This requirement is set out in the Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP). . Certain projects that have more predictable impacts, and are more readily managed, can follow a streamlined approach. This still protects the environment, and shortens the timeline for commencement, review and approval.

    STREAMLINED EA FOR ONTARIO LINE

    On June 30, 2020, the Ontario Government approved a regulation that outlines a new, streamlined EA process for the Ontario Line. The regulation will help get this transit line constructed efficiently, economically and transparently while maintaining strict environmental oversight.

    "The new regulation for the Ontario Line prescribes a very similar approach to what we are used to seeing in the TPAP, with requirements for similar studies and reports," Sheaffer said.

    It largely follows the existing TPAP process, except that it has added flexibility. This allows for more certainty in project planning, reduces the risk of delays, and still ensures strong environmental oversight alongside consultation at various stages of the design and procurement process for the project.

    Protection of the environment will remain a priority as Metrolinx works to deliver transit relief.

    Metrolinx is conducting several detailed environmental assessments along the route of the Ontario Line and will be preparing comprehensive reports on how to address and mitigate potential impacts. They will look at issues like noise and vibration, heritage and the natural environment, to name just a few. Metrolinx will consult on all findings, capture public feedback and address it in final reports before any related construction work begins.

    The Environmental Conditions Report was the first in the series of EAs for the Ontario Line, and was finalized in September 2020. It explored the existing environmental conditions along the entire route of the Ontario Line and surrounding areas, along with an initial understanding of potential impacts and possible solutions.

    The Early Works Report for Exhibition Station has also been completed, with additional Early Works Reports to follow covering other areas of the line, including reports for the joint rail corridor through Riverside and Leslieville as well as the Lower Don Bridges. This allows consultations to start for smaller tasks that can be completed before the main construction begins. These include station modifications, bridge work, existing rail corridor improvements and utility relocations.

    As these early works reports are prepared, work is underway for a more detailed, overarching Environmental Impact Assessment Report that will provide a full analysis of impacts and mitigation measures.

    Keep reading Metrolinx news – and visiting MetrolinxEngage – for details on the next round of public engagement on the Ontario Line, which will include EA consultation and other opportunities to learn about the project and provide feedback.

    Story by Mike Winterburn, Metrolinx Senior Advisor

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    Updated plans for Toronto’s Yonge North Subway Extension released

    The latest analysis from Metrolinx reveals how the project will serve the heart of major growth centres and significantly cut travel times – creating a critical and long awaited extension of our transit network.

    Updated plans for the Yonge North Subway Extension show how the project will make commutes faster and easier for tens of thousands of people travelling between York Region and Toronto.

    The release of an updated business case today- you can find that here – is an important step forward for the project, which calls for roughly eight kilometres of new subway service on Line 1, extending north from Finch Station to Richmond Hill. A flagship project in Metrolinx's innovative Subway Program, these new Yonge North Subway Extension transit connections will open up new travel possibilities in every direction across the region's growing transit network.

    One of the more noticeable and innovative changes in the updated plan is how the line will run at ground level in the northern part of the extension, linking up with the CN railway corridor in the area of Langstaff Road.

    Adjusting the route of the line in this area will better position the project to serve the Richmond Hill Centre and Langstaff Gateway urban growth centres, which are poised for significant development. Creating stronger connections here will mean better connections to transit, including the Richmond Hill GO train line, and less traffic congestion as communities grow.

    This shift will also ensure the project can be built in less time by minimizing lengthy and disruptive excavations, in turn reducing inconveniences to neighbouring communities.

    The adjusted plans also protect for further extension of the line in the future by positioning the northern end of the project along a pre-existing rail corridor.

    As jurisdictions look at ways to manage the impacts of COVID-19, the thousands of jobs and over $3.6 billion worth of economic benefits this project will generate will also help stimulate the economy. During construction, the project is expected to support the equivalent of 4,300 full-time jobs each year, leading to new opportunities for businesses and workers that provide the services and equipment needed to build and operate the extension.

    Transforming your commute

    The Yonge North Subway Extension will bring a world-class level of convenience and a better quality of life to the communities it serves. The extension will eventually accommodate 94,100 boardings each weekday and put 26,000 more people within a 10-minute walk to a station. The project is expected to reduce commute times to downtown Toronto by as much as 22 minutes.

    The extension will also offset traffic congestion as drivers get out from behind the wheel in favour of using the subway. It's predicted that the extension will reduce the total distance travelled by cars during the morning rush hour by 7,700 kilometres, leading to a reduction of 4,800 tonnes in auto-related greenhouse gas emissions each year.

    The new path forward

    Planning teams investigated three options for the route, or alignment, the extension will follow.

    One option looked at the project as initially proposed, while teams explored new routes for the northern portion of the alignment in the other two.

    Ultimately, the alignment that is moving forward for further study places the northern section of the extension at the surface along the existing CN Railway corridor, instead of tunneling all the way to Richmond Hill.

    Under this proposed plan, the line curves away from Yonge Street near Centre Street and runs underground to the proposed subway tunnel portal north of Langstaff Road, aligning with the CN Railway corridor. This approach eliminates the need for time-consuming and disruptive tunneling and station excavations through the northern segment of the extension and limits the need for large, disruptive excavation sites for underground stations and exit buildings. This allows Metrolinx to limit property needs in areas of the surface-level alignment. By using a dedicated railway corridor that already exists, the project can be finished sooner with fewer hydro, natural gas, and water service disruptions for the community during construction.

    Surface-level benefits for stations

    Since building above ground is also less costly, this approach maximizes the number of stations included in the project. It also positions the northern stations at sites that provide better transit connections and more opportunities for nearby communities to grow and evolve.

    The station previously referred to as Richmond Hill Centre has been tentatively re-named High Tech Station and moves slightly south-east of the original site. It will be built at surface level, beneath the bridge along High Tech Road that spans the CN rail corridor. High Tech Station will put the subway within walking distance for more than half of the residents expected to live in the Richmond Hill Centre area by 2041.

    The station previously referred to as Langstaff in previous proposals now moves east and slightly north, to be built at surface level between Highway 7 and Highway 407. This station is tentatively called Bridge Station.

    A major benefit of Bridge Station is that it will provide a convenient connection to the Richmond Hill GO train line and many local and GO Transit bus services. It will also link the Richmond Hill Centre and Langstaff Gateway urban growth centres, at roughly the midpoint of each.

    These two future communities share more than the boundary of Richmond Hill and Markham. They are united by a vision of transforming into unique urban cores along the Yonge Street corridor.

    "Bridge Station maximizes the potential for new communities to grow by bringing the subway closer to development areas," says Becca Nagorsky, Principal Sponsor of Planning and Development with Metrolinx.

    And while these plans are critical in helping Richmond Hill Centre and Langstaff Gateway become modern, vibrant communities, the convenient access to the region's transportation network via Highway 7 and Highway 407 also plays an important part. However, the overpasses, barriers and ramps that make up the highway infrastructure also divide the two halves of this burgeoning hub and present age-old challenges for development next to major highways.

    The Bridge Station site, located right between those highways, maximizes the development potential of land that might otherwise go unused and preserves valuable nearby development space that will bring more opportunities for these areas to flourish.

    Placing the station between two important transportation arteries also makes for stronger connections to other forms of rapid transit, giving residents convenient access to local and regional buses serving York Region and the GTA.

    "It vastly improves bus-to-subway transfers by putting the subway station in the path of the Highway 7 VIVA rapidway," Nagorsky explains.

    "That means buses don't have to divert off their routes in order to connect to the subway."

    Station locations

    While all six previously envisioned stations were studied in the business case, detailed analysis shows that the $5.6 billion funding envelope announced for the project can accommodate four stations, if the extension follows the newly proposed alignment.

    Steeles, Bridge and High Tech stations were determined to be essential for maximizing the benefits of the project. These stations will significantly improve access to frequent rapid transit and support the growth of the neighbourhoods they serve.

    "The stations at Steeles Avenue and in the Richmond Hill Centre area, Bridge and High Tech, contribute a large portion of the extension's ridership," Nagorsky says.

    "That's particularly true of the riders who will access the subway by bus."

    Metrolinx is working with municipal partners to determine the best location for the fourth station as planning work continues. Metrolinx will also explore innovative funding partnerships that could support a fifth station as the analysis is refined.

    Local expertise matters

    Metrolinx and Infrastructure Ontario are working with the York Region Rapid Transit Corporation and the TTC, along with municipal partners in Toronto, Vaughan, Markham and Richmond Hill to bring the best ideas to the table and find innovative solutions at every turn.

    "Input from our partners has been vital to ensuring we understand the needs and aspirations of each municipality," says Stephen Collins, Metrolinx program sponsor for the Yonge North Subway Extension.

    "Given their role in leading the project prior to Metrolinx assuming responsibility, their knowledge and background was helpful in accelerating our understanding of the corridor," he says.

    Collins adds that planning and design work previously completed by the partners was carried forward to the updated business case, including analysis of the Yonge Street corridor.

    Another example of how Metrolinx is leveraging the experience and expertise of their municipal partners to make the project better is through local insights on how to integrate the extension into the wider transit network.

    For example, planning data supplied by the TTC and the City of Toronto is being used to anticipate how expanding access to Line 1 subway service will affect the overall customer experience on the line, especially during peak travel periods. That helps the project partners design the Yonge North Subway Extension with the big picture in mind.

    This project – along with its three cousins in the Subway Program portfolio and the many other transit projects underway across the region – will spread demand across the network as it expands.

    What's important to note is that the extension won't come online until the Ontario Line begins operation.

    When the Ontario Line goes into service, crowding could be reduced by an estimated 14 per cent on the busiest stretch of Line 1. Transfer stations like Bloor/Yonge could see crowding relief by up to 17 per cent.

    The TTC is also working on system improvements throughout its network that will help ensure more frequent service and ease congestion on platforms.

    What's next?

    Very soon, Metrolinx will hold virtual public meetings and other engagement opportunities to seek out input on the project to include wherever possible as planning continues, including environmental assessments.

    The next step of the analysis for the project is to confirm the benefits of the extension and refine designs and delivery plans through the Preliminary Design Business Case.

    To learn more about the Yonge North Subway Extension and to stay up-to-date on what's happening in your community, visit Metrolinx.com/YongeSubwayExt.

    You can always share thoughts, questions or comments on the project by emailing YongeSubwayExt@metrolinx.com or follow the project on social media:

    Twitter – @YongeSubwayExt

    Instagram – @YongeSubwayExt

    Facebook – Yonge Subway Extension

    Story by James Moore, Metrolinx senior advisor, Communications and Public Affairs.

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    West-End Gatineau Tramway with Myriam Nadeau, President of the STO - March 2021

    West-End Gatineau Tramway with Myriam Nadeau, President of the STO - March 2021
    The City of Gatineau is moving forward with opportunity studies to determine the need, technology, route options to better serve the West-End of Gatineau (specifically Aylmer and the Plateau). It has been determined that a service offered by rail is needed to provide adequate service in the future for these growing communities as well as providing service in and out of the downtown core of Ottawa. 

    In this March 2021 interview with Myriam Nadeau, City Councillor for Pointe Gatineau and President of the STO, we discuss the West-End tram for Gatineau and answer the following questions: 
    • How a decision was made to pursue building a Tram/LRT in Gatineau. 
    • The advantages that the Tram/LRT will bring to commuters and citizens of Gatineau and in particular to those residing in the Plateau and Aylmer. 
    • The currently proposed routing options. 
    • The options for entry into Ottawa via the Portage Bridge: Surface on Wellington / Underground beneath Sparks. 
    • The timelines: work that has been completed, the next steps, and when might we see the first passengers ride this new transit service. 
    • How citizens can get involved during consultations, as well as provide feedback and support.
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    Transit Commission meeting - March 17, 2021

    The Transit Commission received an update on O-Train Line 1 and Bus Service. The following are some of the points delivered in today's update:

    Rectification plan items related to the following are complete: 

    • Switch Heater Failures 
    • Overhead Catenary System 
    • Vehicle Traction Power 
    • Vehicle Passenger Doors 
    • Vehicle HVAC

    RTG continues to progress towards completing the work related to: 

    • Vehicle Auxiliary Power (CVS units) 
    • Fine-tuning of Vehicle Braking Systems
      • Software-related testing and validation work is ongoing

    Rail Reliability Continued Monitoring 

    Moving to an 11-train service plan has enabled work on the items below to be expedited: 

    • Track 
      • Trackwork scheduled for this spring to enhance ride quality comfort and noise reduction (rail grinding/profiling, etc.) 
    • Train Couplers 
      • Software testing and mechanical modifications continue; anticipated to be complete by the end of April

    Train Wheels 

    • Wheel replacements on the fleet continue, as this period of time with an 11-train schedule is being leveraged to accelerate the wheel replacement schedule; 
    • Daily inspections continue on the fleet until all wheels are replaced and/or set screw is adjusted; 
    • RTG has received and installed specialised equipment from Europe enabling wheel replacement work to occur at two work sites and all processes validated through original equipment manufacturers; and, 
    • Independent TSB investigation continues, and all required parties are engaged, including the Chief Safety Officer, the RMCO, wheel and metal experts, Transport Canada.
    Source : City of Ottawa

    OC Transpo provides update on 12 priority projects in 2020 Business Plan

    The Transit Commission today received a report entitled Transit Services 2021 Business Plan and Reporting on 2020 Business Plan, which provides an update on progress made on the 12 key departmental priorities identified in the 2020 Business Plan and identifies the 10 key projects that Transportation Services staff will work to deliver in 2021.

    Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, all projects in the 2020 Business Plan were initiated and are either completed or are nearly complete. Some highlights of completed work include:

    • Introduced the ability for customers to renew their Community Pass, EquiPass, or Access Pass remotely.
    • Established the Virtual Line which ends the need for physical line ups at the Rideau Centre Customer Service Centre and in the future will allow customers to book an appointment in advance.
    • Introduced the ability for Para Transpo customers to register their monthly Presto pass in advance and use it to pay fares, eliminating the need to carry a receipt. The tap function inside Para Transpo vehicles is planned to launch later in 2021.
    • Launched a customer trial for a new touchless way to pay fares using credit cards and smartphones at O-Train Line 1's Rideau Station. A full roll-out across all buses and fare gates is anticipated later in 2021.
    • Presented the first Regulatory Monitor and Compliance Officer annual independent compliance report to Transit Commission and Council in February 2020.
    • Developed a new performance measures and reporting structure, with the first report going to Transit Commission in April 2021.
    • Opened the first Happy Goat Coffee concession stand at Blair Station in December 2020, with the Hurdman, Rideau, and Tunney's Pasture locations expected to open in early 2021.
    • Issued a contract for the supply of four battery-electric buses. New Flyer was awarded the contract and the buses will go into service in fall 2021.
    • The Société de transport de l'Outaouais (STO) and OC Transpo, along with the Ville de Gatineau, have worked together since 2017 to prepare for a new STO bus route alignment through downtown to provide better connections with O-Train Line 1. It goes into effect in June 2021.

    The 10 key priorities for 2021 are:

    1. Operational Response to COVID-19
    2. Battery-Electric Bus Project
    3. Transit Fare Working Group
    4. On-Demand Transit
    5. Enhanced Real-Time Information for Customers
    6. Permanent Bus Operator Barriers
    7. Legislated Improvements to Operator Breaks
    8. O-Train Line 1 Station Improvements
    9. Rail Simulator Upgrades
    10. Stage 2 O-Train Project Construction

    In 2018, the City appointed a Regulatory Monitor and Compliance Officer (RMCO) to perform regulatory compliance monitoring for O-Train Line 1 when in operation. The annual RMCO Report for 2020 was presented to the Transit Commission today, and focused on inspections and repairs of tracks, light rail vehicles and the overhead catenary system. The report showed that OC Transpo was in full compliance, and that the contractors (Rideau Transit Maintenance and Alstom) require more consistent documentation to be fully compliant. There has been progress made by the contractors, as 17 of the 23 remedial actions identified in the report have been completed.

    An operational update on O-Train Line 1 showed that Rideau Transit Group (RTG) continues to advance through the rectification plan. Train service has been reliable since upgrade work was completed on December 6, and throughout the winter, the improved switch heaters installed on the line have proven to operate reliably in all weather conditions. To date, issues have been rectified regarding the overhead catenary system, vehicle switch heater failures, traction power, vehicle passenger doors, and vehicle heating, ventilation and air conditioning. RTG also continues to progress towards completing the work related to vehicle auxiliary power and fine-tuning of vehicle braking systems.

    Wheel replacement continues on light trail vehicles. Rideau Transit Maintenance will continue to perform the daily inspections on the remainder of the train fleet until all impacted wheels have been replaced. The City continues to engage industry experts and will continue to work with the Transportation Safety Board as their independent investigation continues.

    The Commission approved a recommendation to move into an agreement with the City's current transit advertising contractor to expand the existing advertising contract to include O-Train Line 1 trains and stations, as well as extend the contract until all Stage 2 extensions are open. In July 2020, the Transit Commission directed staff to commence a procurement process to identify potential revenue opportunities from advertising on O-Train Line 1. Today's report outlines that by adding Line 1 to the current contract with Pattison Outdoor Advertising covering bus and Transitway stations, it will create opportunities for additional revenue. By having a single contractor responsible for managing all advertising assets, including those within the Stage 2 extensions, it will result in operational efficiencies and higher revenues.


    Meeting Audio (To be posted once the meeting concludes)

    Transit Commission meeting - March 17, 2021.mp3

    O-Train Line 1 & Bus Service Update


    RMCO Annual Compliance Report 2020


    Transit Services 2021 Business Plan and Reporting on 2020 Business Plan

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    Point and Call – Metrolinx introduces the practice of Shisa Kanko to GO Transit trains

    Passengers traveling, or soon returning to more regular GO Transit trips might notice something a little out of the ordinary when their train comes to a stop. An ancient Japanese practice is now in place and it's aimed at improving the door operations of the coaches and ultimately making the GO system even safer.

    Mother always said it was impolite to point.

    And don't get her started on speaking loudly.

    But in this case, taking a page out of lessons originally learned on Japan's transit network, dramatic hand gestures and loud calls are signs of refinement – and added safety.

    GO trains are now pulling into stations and opening their doors with the customer service ambassadors – the CSAs who are stationed in the accessibility coach – pointing at certain indicators and calling out their status loudly to themselves. These instructions are not for customers and are only for the CSAs.

    It's called 'Shisa Kanko' – a pointing and calling safety practice used on Japanese railways for almost a century.

    "The practice engages the operator's brain, eyes, hands, mouth, and ears to have increased awareness of what they are doing" explained Bilal Quadri, the manager of Customer Service at Alstom.

    Alstom, the company formerly known as Bombardier, provides the crews that operate GO Transit's train fleet.

    "By pointing and calling out actions, an operator's focus is heightened during key moments."

    According to Quadri, some of the CSAs work and operate 60 to 70 stops a day and with so many platforms, it's easy to fall into a routine and create an automatic habit.

    The same can be said about anyone who drives or walks to and from the same destination or constantly does the same action repeatedly. Most of us have driven to a regular destination, and then thought 'I actually can't really recall the details of that ride'.

    Point and call helps transit staff break out of that automation by stimulating the senses.

    It involves the CSA pointing at a spotting location and calling out 'good spot'.

    The CSA will then point in both directions and at the same time yell 'clear right, clear left' determining when the platform is safe to open the doors.

    "I find I'm sharper and on the ball more with this new method," explains Katelyn Drysdale, a CSA for 11 years.

    With the organization constantly evolving, she says her, and her colleagues are used to changes and adapting to new practices.

    According to Drysdale, point and call was easy to pick up and she already finds it very effective. "It allows me to take a step back and get a proper sense of my environmental awareness, something that is crucial for me while operating the doors, she explains."

    Once customers have boarded or deboarded the train, they may see the CSA stepping out of the train, and again pointing in both directions calling 'clear right, clear left', making sure no passengers are left behind before safely closing the doors.

    The gesture may seem a little silly, or a tad dramatic, but it's effective. Japan's public transit system, a transportation network that moved 12 billion passengers annually prior to the pandemic, is considered one of the world's safest transit systems.

    "I've been reading about this for a few years and I've seen it myself in Japan when I was on vacation two years ago," explains Alstom's Quadri.

    "I had observed this practice in Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka and I thought if other world class transit agencies are adopting this, why not us?"

    Metrolinx was quick to support this innovative idea, especially as the transit agency gets ready to launch the largest expansion of GO service in it's history.

    "This is an important addition to the CSA workflow especially on corridors where we have massive construction projects underway," says Rob Andrews, director of Rail Operations at Metrolinx.

    Andrews also mentioned the practice won't negatively impact GO Transit's on time performance, something he and his team are committed to delivering, knowing the importance for customers.

    Nearly all customer service ambassadors have now been trained and are currently practicing point and call.

    So, if you're taking the GO train and you see your CSA using this method, just know this is another step towards flawless door operations and hence, greater safety for everyone. And feel free to explain it to mom, if she accompanies you aboard.

    Story and Photos : Nitish Bissonauth, Metrolinx bilingual spokesperson, media relations and issues specialist

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    Project Spotlight: New Signaling Technology Installed on Ottawa’s O-Train South Extension

    As part of the O-Train South Extension Project, Siemens Mobility is preparing to install new signaling technology on Lines 2 and 4. The updated train control equipment will ensure that trains are moving to meet any changes in situation, demand, and at speeds that provide the most efficiency throughout the system. This will be increasingly important given higher ridership levels expected with the new extension and its connection to Ottawa's Macdonald-Cartier International Airport.

    This technology will be installed on all existing and new trains, tracks and stations servicing the existing O-Train South Line, as well as the 16 km of additional track and 8 stations to be built for the new extension. While the technology is proven through decades of safe use around the world, this newest version will be further supported with a complete upgrade to the existing signaling and communications system, including new signals, train detection system and switch machines, ensuring optimal performance throughout the entire system.

    One important feature will be the Automated Train Protection (ATP) system. This technology will help the driver of the trains manage safe operational levels, protecting passengers against human error, such as over-speeding. In such situations, the system can automatically take over control of the train's operation and return it back to a safe level.

    Work is also now starting with the vehicle providers, including Stadler, who will provide 7 new vehicles. The technology provider is working with the vehicle manufacturers to install important onboard equipment, which will allow the vehicle operator to receive information and communicate effectively and clearly within this new system.

    In the spring, work will begin to install the trackside equipment that will send appropriate signals to the driver, letting them know about any action needed on their part: to wait, to slow down, or to speed up; all contributing to the safe operation of the O-Train South Line.

    By the Numbers:

    New Signaling & Train Control system technology will be installed in:

    • 13 Diesel Multiple Uit (DMU) trains will be outfitted with the new onboard equipment.
    • 24 km of existing and new track will have new trackside (or "wayside") equipment.
    Source : City of Ottawa
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    O-Train - Stage 2 LRT Quarterly Update - FEDCO - March 2, 2021


    The City's Finance and Economic Development Committee today received an update on the Stage 2 LRT construction progress as part of the regular quarterly update.

    In the south, work is progressing at the Walkley Maintenance and Storage Facility and on multiple rail bridges, including across the Airport Parkway, Uplands Road, Lester Road, Leitrim Road, Bowesville Road, Earl Armstrong Road and Limebank Road. In the east, construction of support columns for the new rail flyover bridge between Blair and Montréal stations is nearing completion and work continues in all areas up to Trim Road. In the west, tunnel construction is underway, and crews are preparing to start work on highway interchanges at Pinecrest Road and Moodie Drive, with ramp closures set to begin in March. 

    Source : City of Ottawa


    Audio from the Presentation and Update

    Stage 2 Quarterly Update - FEDCO - March 2, 2021.mp3

    Stage 2 Quarterly Update Presentation

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    Memo: O-Train Stage 1 and Stage 2 Quarterly Memo to Council (Q4 2020)

    The following memorandum outlines the milestones achieved on the O-Train Stage 1 Confederation Line and Stage 2 Confederation Line and Trillium Line extension projects in Q4 2020 and provides an overview of the planned work for Q1 2021. 

    The City of Ottawa continues to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic in relation to both the maintenance and operation of the Stage 1 Confederation Line and the delivery of the Stage 2 Project. The various maintenance, design, and construction teams working on light rail in Ottawa are adhering to all guidance provided by Ottawa Public Health and the Province of Ontario. 

    In addition to monitoring the local construction impacts, staff are working with Rideau Transit Group to monitor potential impacts on the Alstom manufacturing facility in Brampton, Ontario and are working with TransitNEXT to monitor potential impacts on the Stadler manufacturing facility in Bussnang, Switzerland. At present, vehicle deliveries from the Brampton facility are continuing and the initial vehicle deliveries from Switzerland are expected to begin this year. 

    Construction continues in all geographic areas of the project and the City is monitoring the potential impacts on the projects closely. The City is working closely with the contractors to understand if there will be any impacts to these projects as a result of the COVID-19 environment locally and abroad. 

    The Trillium Line team has indicated schedule impacts which are now under review. The City is working with TransitNEXT to confirm whether the delays will be fully realized and to confirm if the delays can be reasonably mitigated. The handover of the system is still scheduled for 2022. 

    The Confederation Line team has reported some schedule pressures, and these have since been resolved. Following an assessment of the schedule and of schedule mitigation opportunities, the original handover timeline of 2024 in the east and 2025 in the west remain as planned.

    Stage 2 LRT - Update Highlights

    • The Goldenrod Bridge at Tunney's is set to be completed in Q2 2021, which will enable the removal of the temporary embarkment bridge buses use to access the bus loop from Scott, and thus extend tracks west;
    • Support for excavation at Rochester field and New Orchard started Q4 2020;
    • The new Lincoln Fields station construction is expected to start Q2 2021;
    • New Iris Street bridge set to start Q3 2021, with station Q2 2022;
    • Baseline bus loop complete in Q4 2020, with bus operator building set to be constructed Q2 2021;
    • Montreal Station bridge construction set to start Q1 2021;
    • Construction of a new Trim/174 intersection started Q4 2020 and is ongoing.

    Source : City of Ottawa

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