Two Québec firms receive mandate for concept & design of Charlevoix touring

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QUÉBEC CITY, May 18 /CNW/ - Groupe Le Massif has recently entrusted Morelli Designers ( with a design mandate, while Le Centre de réalisation d'outils innovateurs Inc. (CROI - will oversee the Charlevoix touring train ( car upgrades, transforming the convoy into genuine experiential railcars. Design and restoration work totalling close to $5M commenced in April, with a goal to offer a novel rail experience to touring train passengers travelling between Québec City and La Malbaie by Summer 2011.

A spirit of innovation, creativity and expertise in areas of ergonomics and transportation are just several of the criteria to have convinced Groupe Le Massif and its subsidiary Train touristique de Charlevoix to decide on these firms from Montreal and Chicoutimi. "Beyond comfort and aesthetics, we wish to bring something new to the rail experience while respecting industry standards," explained Nancy Belley (, general manager of Train touristique de Charlevoix. "Both firms retained fully understand our vision, and are determined to go beyond what has already been developed and in doing so, redefine future rail transport standards," she specified.

Unique Staging

Advocating material re-use, the eight-car convoy to be restored and transformed into observation cars will expose travellers to the beauty of the scenery, while making passengers aware of the environment and its riches, and conservation issues. "Railcar shell design will feature the maximum amount of windows structurally permissible in keeping with safety and regulatory norms," stated Belley.

"Among the challenges to optimize passenger experience are the treatment of structural elements like walls and ceilings, and the integration of state of the art technologies," mentioned Benoît Milord, vice-president of development at Groupe Le Massif. He also added that interior configurations will be designed to maximize passenger comfort, yet remain functional for on-car personnel.

Complete Metamorphosis from Convoy to Tracks

Built in the 60s, Groupe Le Massif's Pullman Standard cars were until recently in service in the suburbs of Chicago. Their complete upgrade is expected to require one year. To date, 3D models have been created and once re-outfitted, the cars will convey up to 550 passengers, with six cars each accommodating 72 passengers. Two other railcars with lesser capacity will be reserved for passengers with reduced mobility.

In parallel, work commenced last fall ( on the 136 km of track stretching between Québec City and Clermont resumed early May. Train touristique de Charlevoix wishes to optimize line safety, comfort, carrying capacity and speed. Daily departures will be offered by Summer 2011, as well as a rail shuttle linking Le Massif's two environments - La Ferme ( in Baie-Saint-Paul, and the base of the mountain ( in Petite-Rivière-Saint-François.

SOURCE Massif de Charlevoix

For further information: For further information: Stéphan Pageau, Communications & Marketing - CROI, (418) 545-4449, ext. 40,; Michel Morelli, President - Morelli Designers, (514) 287-3344,; Isabelle Vallée, Public Relations - Groupe Le Massif, (418) 932-4023,,

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