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Montreal Metro AZUR - Orders and Arrivals


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Not completely new news but news from the past 2 months and worth sharing here.

As many are aware, the STM had ordered originally 468 Azur metro cars (52 complete trains) to replace the MR-63. As the original contract with Bombardier/Alstom was delayed in delivery by about 2 years, the manufactures agreed to supply an additional 18 Azur metro cars (2 complete trains) for free. This brings the total to 486 metro cars.

Earlier this summer, the Quebec government announced it would help fund an additional order of Azur totaling 153 metro cars (17 complete trains). They will be used to offer a guarantee of complete Azur service on the Orange line and 90% service on the Green line. The rest of the Green line, as well as the entirety of the Blue and Yellow lines will continue to be served by the MR-73. This new order was an effort to help save jobs that would have been lost at the Bombardier plant in La Pocatiere, Quebec as well as to benefit the users of the Montreal Metro.

The new Azur trains offer higher capacity, better circulation between cars, more comfort (better air circulation and lighting), and faster performance.

The original order should be completed and in service before end of this year. The new additional order should start in 2019.

A few more facts, the original order for Azur was valued at $2.5 million per metro car when the order was placed in 2010. The new order will be $3.25 million per metro car, signed in 2018, a total of $497 million for the new order.

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I regularly go to Montreal and I can say that the ventilation system is almost "AC" like. If I didn't know about it, I would be certain that the trains we're equipped with AC.  The trains are equ

Happy to hear you enjoyed the Azur. The air flow is significantly improved over the older generation trains and can be very strong when the train is fairly empty. It is impressive how it works and get

Very good explanation @Matth69000. I knew the BOA design allowed the air to flow front to back when the train was in motion but I wasn't familiar with the specifics on how it actually worked. Thanks.

I was just reading about this on another site and it is said that there are currently 50 Azur in operation, with 4 left to deliver between now and February 2019.

Another tidbit I read is that there are more Azur than MR-73.

Azur - 50 trains (with 4 to come) vs 47 trains - MR-73.

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  • 7 months later...
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3 hours ago, DavidBellerive said:

Genuine question for those who actually tried the AZUR.

Given the Metro as a whole cannot really be equipped with AC, are they more comfortable in the summer or is it quite similar to the older rail-stock?

I regularly go to Montreal and I can say that the ventilation system is almost "AC" like. If I didn't know about it, I would be certain that the trains we're equipped with AC. 

The trains are equipped with a system called "Ventilation Mecanique forcée Refrigérée" wich means in english "Refrigerated Forced Mechanical Ventilation". The system is pretty basic, it uses outside air with little fans to create a current inside the train, going front to back (the AZUR are BOA trains remember) to cool the inside of the train up to 5°C under outside temperature. 

It's a technology used in a lot of modern days trains and metro systems. It differs from the older MR-73 which are equipped with air vents, letting air pass when the train is moving. The problem is if the train isn't moving no air is going through the vents. Worst the MR-73 aren't BOA so the air only travels in one car and can't create a big enough air current to cool the cars.

Hope my explanation was good enough, Cheers.

Edited by Matth69000
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Very good explanation @Matth69000. I knew the BOA design allowed the air to flow front to back when the train was in motion but I wasn't familiar with the specifics on how it actually worked. Thanks.

I agree, when the trains are moving the air flow is quite strong and refreshing, definitely no issues. When it is stopped, the air flow is more limited but I can't recall a time I found it uncomfortable. The MR-73 and MR-63 have more forced air which may work the same or better when stopped.

But nothing compares to the Azur when moving. The air is soo much fresher and cooler. Feels less dusty and cleaner to breath too.

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3 hours ago, Matth69000 said:

Hope my explanation was good enough, Cheers.

Really great explanation!

All I remember from spending a few days in Montreal was how the air "felt" in the metro, especially compared to Toronto's rocket with their HVAC. I remember reading it would be "virtually impossible" to conditioned, given it is all underground, so glad to hear they figured solutions to control temperatures on board the vehicles!

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  • 1 year later...

This weekend I was in Montreal and, for the first time, actually boarded an Azur a few times along the Orange Line, and a MR-73 on the Blue Line. It was also my first real time on the Montreal Metro beyond the yellow line a few years ago.

First of all, the forced ventilation explained by Matt works really well! It was about 30 degrees outside and never felt uncomfortable. Even the MR-73 are not that bad given the different system.

Overall, I was quite impressed with the Azur. They are definitely modern and (IMO) better equipped than the Citadis Spirit we have (I love the display with the time to next station along the doors and the LED strip indicating on which side the doors will open). The acceleration is surprising and so is the top speed given the inclines throughout the network. I actually really enjoyed my time riding the Metro, both from a "transit fan" and user perspective and will totally try to find reasons to go back sooner than later! 😂

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Happy to hear you enjoyed the Azur. The air flow is significantly improved over the older generation trains and can be very strong when the train is fairly empty. It is impressive how it works and gets the job done. Of course, the look of the trains themselves, the colour scheme and the finishing touches are a world apart from anything else. The STM definitely got the best train they possibly could.

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It was indeed quite a "redefining" perspective on a metro versus the more traditional North American subway systems (Toronto and New York for example). While I wish Montreal would push forward to develop more lines, there is a pride in the system and the way it is maintained. There is always things we want to be done different (get rid of OPUS for example), but the system as a whole is a proven system which was tailor-made to the needs and realities of the city. The MPM-10 was problematic and delayed in the beginning, but it actually built on the strengths and weaknesses of the older rolling stock.

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There was hope with Projet Montréal's election with the Pink Line, which would have filled in the few blanks quite well, but the CAQ's priorities are focused in their own riding (for example, expanding the REM to Laval, Chambly and Boucherville). Parts of the Pink Line's rough routing will be built as streetcars as part of a deal the Legault mad with Plante in order to fund the Québec City project.

It's quite disappointing to  dense Montréal reduced to streetcars while rural and low-density suburban communities get the REM. That said, the CAQ is the first government to acknowledge the existence of the Outaouais in decades (if ever), so...

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