MONTRÉAL, March 14, 2018 /CNW Telbec/ - The Réseau de transport métropolitain (RTM) presented this morning an action plan that will sustainably improve service reliability and punctuality on each of the rail lines in its network, throughout every period of the year. The plan includes investments of $450M over five years in infrastructures, rolling stock, operations and maintenance, as well as in the improvement of the winter operation plan. The RTM will also implement a service guarantee program and offer a compensation to the users who were inconvenienced at the beginning of the year.
Action plan highlights
Additional and replacement electrical components will be installed on the Deux-Montagnes line's switching systems, to prevent the problems from snow buildup and freezing that caused several significant delays earlier this year. The five other network lines will also benefit from new installations of the same type.
The railway bridges on the Deux-Montagnes line will be repaired and strengthened in order to maintain the normal operating speed of the trains, including trains composed of dual-mode locomotives and 3000‑series multi-level cars.
Additional storage tracks and a locomotive test and wheel reprofiling building will also be installed at the Lachine Maintenance Centre. These initiatives will help us to improve fleet maintenance and ensure the reliability of rolling stock.
A new maintenance centre will be built for the Mascouche line, as the arrival of the Réseau express métropolitain (REM) means that trains on this line can no longer circulate in the Mount Royal tunnel to access the Pointe-Saint-Charles Maintenance Centre.
- Rolling stock
MR90 cars on the Deux‑Montagnes line will be refurbished. Moreover, 20 additional two-level cars will be acquired so as to ensure the success of the rolling stock maintenance and renovation programs and provide an operational car reserve.
The ten F59PH locomotives will be replaced by new low greenhouse gas emission diesel locomotives that can pull longer sets of wagons. Not only will they increase reliability, but they will also allow the RTM to accommodate increased ridership.
- Operations and maintenance
With a view to increasing operational, maintenance and intervention efficiency during service disruptions, many actions have been added and the RTM continues to perform rigorous follow-ups with Bombardier Transportation.
- Winter operation plan
The winter operation plan will be further improved to prevent delays caused by switch and signalling problems. Additional staff will be assigned to strategic locations during the winter and additional specialized equipment will be acquired.
- Service guarantee and compensation
Inspired by best practices, a service guarantee program will be developed this year. Furthermore, over the next few weeks, customers will be offered either a 30% discount off one monthly pass (TRAM or TRAIN), or six free train tickets as compensation for the inconvenience caused by delays. The terms and conditions will soon be announced.
"With this plan, the RTM team is making every effort to fulfil its mission, which consists in moving people in an efficient manner while targeting service excellence by being proactive, innovative and flexible," said Josée Bérubé, Chair of the RTM's Board of Directors.
"This plan, well underway when the Ministre des Transports, Mobilité durable et Électrification des transports publicly called upon us a few weeks ago to find solutions to specific problems, aim to find sustainable solutions to specific problems for the benefit of our clients" said Raymond Bachant, RTM's Director General.
While this plan demonstrates the RTM's sincere desire to deliver a punctuality rate of above 95%, it is important to emphasize that trains are operated in a complex framework where service reliability is dependent on constant coordination with CN and CP in terms of infrastructure maintenance and the management of railway traffic across the five rail lines the RTM must share with freight trains.
That is why, the success of this plan is, among other things, based on close collaboration with the different partners, including the Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain, the ministère des Transports, de la Mobilité durable et de l'Électrification des transports, Bombardier Transport, CN and CP.
For the Deux-Montagnes line, the action plan will primarily help reduce the occurrence of mechanical and electrical problems with MR-90 cars that operate at full capacity during peak hours. The line's punctuality remains a daily challenge, given that this line has received no investments in infrastructures and rolling stock in 23 years, the trains run along a single track for 18 km between the Bois-Franc and Deux-Montagnes stations, and the line will be modified to make way for the Réseau express métropolitain (REM).
The REM construction work may affect service on the Deux-Montagnes and Mascouche lines. The RTM undertakes to communicate any service status changes as soon as information from the REM project management office is available.
The Réseau de transport métropolitain
Since June 1, 2017, the RTM has aligned the public transport expertise of the Agence métropolitaine de transport (AMT) with that of the bus transportation agencies of the North and South shores (the CIT and MRC). The RTM is responsible for operating regular bus and commuter train services, including paratransit services within the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (82 municipalities), the Kahnawake Mohawk Territory, and Ville de Saint-Jérôme.
For further information: Media contact: Caroline Julie Fortin, Advisor, Media Relations and Public Affairs, Réseau de transport métropolitain, Tel.: 514-287-2464, extension 4057, email@example.com; Elaine Arsenault, Advisor, Media Relations, Réseau de transport métropolitain, Tel.: 514-287-2464, extension 4057, firstname.lastname@example.org