Credit River Bridge gets a third track - State-of-the-art technology used to install bridge span for track expansion



    TORONTO, Aug. 11 /CNW/ - The Credit River Bridge along the GO Transit
Lakeshore West corridor was widened this past weekend to improve rush hour
service. The process took just six hours and new and innovative technology was
used to install the pre-assembled bridge section, which adds a third mainline
track to the existing two-track bridge.
    The third track addition is part of a project to widen the Lakeshore West
line to improve peak period service for the 60,000 GO Transit commuters who
travel in and out of downtown Toronto each day.
    "The installation of this third track will help cut commute times for
passengers and improve the efficiency of this important commuting option,"
said the Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and
Communities. "It also reflects this government's commitment to working with
its partners to improve environmentally-friendly transportation options such
as transit."
    "Improving GO Transit service is critical if we are going to ease traffic
congestion, strengthen the economy and improve the environment throughout the
Greater Toronto Area," said the Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance
and Minister Responsible for the GTA. "This is just the latest investment by
our government to make commuter rail service more efficient for the benefit of
the tens of thousands of commuters each and every weekday."
    The installation process provided a safer and more cost-effective
alternative to the more common practice of assembling the expansion over the
bridge. As the bridge span was pre-assembled and slid into place overnight, GO
Transit was able to complete the process without any interruption to service.
    "Investing in transit infrastructure is part of our plan for the economy
and of our fight against climate change," said Ontario Minister of
Transportation Jim Bradley. "Better service for GO Transit riders makes it
easier for commuters to leave their cars at home."
    The work on the Credit River Bridge is part of the GO Transit Rail
Improvement Program (GO TRIP), which includes a larger expansion and
improvement project underway on the Lakeshore West railway corridor from the
Port Credit GO Station to Kerr Street in Oakville.
    Construction began on this section of the corridor in April 2007, and is
expected to be completed by November 2009. Upon completion, the improvements
will allow for the introduction of more GO train service and help reduce
delays during peak travel periods.
    "Because of its unique assembly process, the Credit River Bridge project
has been of particular interest to GO Transit riders, and we are pleased to
have this important piece of this corridor's expansion complete," said Greg
Ashbee, Rail Expansion Program Manager at GO Transit.

    For more information about GO Transit's improvement and expansion
program, please go to www.gotransit.com/gotrip.

    Backgrounders with further information on the installation, the Canada
Strategic Infrastructure Fund and GO TRIP projects are attached.

    
                                 Backgrounder
                                 ------------
                                 ------------

                         CREDIT RIVER BRIDGE WIDENING
                         ----------------------------

    The process used for the installation of the bridge for the third rail
line over the Credit River was unique given that the span was assembled on
land and then slid into place. This process provided a safer and more
cost-effective alternative to assembling the expansion over the bridge and
meant that GO Transit service along the corridor was not delayed or
interrupted.
    Support beams and strand jacks were installed at either end of the
pre-assembled bridge span.
    Once the support beams were installed, the pre-assembled span was placed
on four rail cars to move it along the existing Credit River Bridge to the
installation location. The 329-tonne span was then slid over the new
foundation using hydraulic technology. The support beams and strand jacks were
removed after the span was set into place. The rail cars were then removed
from the tracks, and the span was slowly lowered onto the bearings already in
place on the existing bridge.
    The installation was completed in conjunction with Western Mechanical
Electrical Millwright Services, an industrial equipment supply company from
Barrie, Ontario. The entire installation process took approximately six hours
one evening and was, for the most part, controlled by an on-site computer.


                                                                 August 2008


                       GO TRANSIT IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS
                       -------------------------------

    The Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund supports large-scale projects of
major national and regional significance. Through this fund, the federal and
provincial governments agreed to provide up to $385 million each to support
major GO Transit rail infrastructure improvements over seven years.
Municipalities in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area will also provide
funding.
    GO Transit carries more than 170,000 passengers an average of
32 kilometres every day on its rail system. During rush hour, almost every
seat on all GO trains is occupied. The expansion will enable GO to accommodate
more than 40,000 additional passengers forecast to use the system during peak
periods by 2011.
    The GO Transit Rail Improvement Program (GO TRIP) includes 12 GO rail
projects across the system and an expansion of the GO bus network. Most of
these projects are underway, with completion expected in 2012. Below is an
update for each project.

    Lakeshore West corridor

    A third track is being added on two sections of the Lakeshore West
corridor to allow more GO Train service and reduce delays:

         - Port Credit Station (Mississauga) to Kerr Street (Oakville):
           Construction began in April 2007 and is expected to be complete by
           November 2009.
         - Burlington Station to Bayview Junction (Hamilton): Construction on
           this portion of the corridor was completed in April 2008. All-day
           service to Aldershot Station began in September 2007.

    In April 2008, GO Transit implemented 12-car trains along the Lakeshore
West corridors. The addition of the two rail cars has enabled each 12-car
train to accommodate 300 new riders per train - an increase of 20 per cent.
    Prior to the introduction of the new, longer trains, station platform
extensions were constructed at Port Credit, Clarkson, Oakville and Aldershot
on the Lakeshore West corridor.

    Lakeshore East corridor

    Improvements to accommodate three-track operation between Union Station
and Scarborough Station were completed in April 2008. This included the
extension of platforms at Scarborough, Eglinton and Danforth stations.

    Milton corridor

    In April 2008, GO Transit implemented 12-car trains along the Milton rail
corridors. The addition of the two rail cars has enabled each 12-car train to
accommodate 300 new riders per train - an increase of 20 per cent.
    Prior to the introduction of the new, longer trains, station platform
extensions were constructed at Milton, Meadowvale, Cooksville, Erindale,
Kipling and Dixie on the Milton corridor. The platform extension at
Streetsville Station is currently underway.
    A new storage site was built to accommodate longer 12-car trains near
Milton Station. This allows trains to be stored closer to where they start and
finish in order to minimize delays and reduce unnecessary train trips. The
site has been operational since January 2007.

    Stouffville corridor

    Construction began in May 2006 on a GO rail underpass that will allow GO
Transit to avoid delays caused by freight train traffic.
    While this project was expected to be completed by December 2008, most of
the work related to the underpass has been completed and recently the first GO
Train passed through the new depressed corridor. As a result, GO Train service
along this corridor is more efficient and passengers can expect fewer delays.

    Georgetown corridor - West Toronto Diamond

    Construction is underway on the West Toronto Diamond rail-to-rail grade
separation. This rail underpass will allow GO trains to avoid delays caused by
conflicts with freight trains. Preliminary works are complete, and the
construction of the grade separation is expected to begin in early 2009, with
a forecast completion date of spring 2011.

    Georgetown South (Weston corridor)

    An individual environmental assessment is underway to identify
improvements required to accommodate increased GO Train frequency and options
for transportation link between Union Station and Pearson International
Airport.

    Georgetown North corridor

    Construction began in fall 2006 to increase track capacity along the
corridor, accommodate two new rush-hour trains and provide limited off-peak
service to the Mount Pleasant GO station in North Brampton. Construction is
expected to be complete by July 2009.

    Bradford corridor

    The Snider rail-to-rail grade separation at the CN York subdivision
freight line has been operational since December 2006. This GO Train rail
overpass allows GO Transit to avoid delays caused by conflicts with freight
trains.
    Improvements along the Bradford corridor to accommodate rail service to
Barrie are also complete and service has been operational since December 17,
2007. During the week, four morning trains depart from the new GO Transit
Barrie South Station to Union Station, and four afternoon trains depart from
Union Station to the City of Barrie.

    Union Station Rail Corridor Program

    GO Transit awarded the contract for the signal improvements to Siemens.
Design work began in December 2007, with overall completion expected in 2014.
The work on this project will include a complete replacement of the
70-year-old track signal system at Union Station.
    Additional improvements to Union Station are also underway, including new
tracks and platforms. This will help improve the efficiency of the train
network and increase operational capacity.
    The Don Yard has been redeveloped by GO Transit for its daytime train
storage needs and is fully operational.

    Other service areas

    On September 4, 2007, two new GO Bus routes to Guelph were implemented as
part of the GO TRIP program. In addition, on June 30, 2008, GO Transit bus
service was extended to Stoney Creek.


                                                                 August 2008
    




For further information:

For further information: Catherine Loubier, Director of Communications,
Office of the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities,
Ottawa,(613) 991-0700; Nicole Lippa-Gasparro, Office of the Ontario Minister
of Transportation, Toronto, (416) 327-1815; Media Relations, Transport Canada,
Ottawa, (613) 993-0055; Trina Melatti, GO TRIP, (416) 869-3600, ext. 5175; Bob
Nichols, Communications Branch, Ontario Ministry of Transportation, (416)
327-1158; Transport Canada is online at www.tc.gc.ca. Subscribe to news
releases and speeches at www.tc.gc.ca/e-news and keep up to date on the latest
from Transport Canada. This news release may be made available in alternative
formats for persons with visual disabilities.


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