Metro car replacement contract: good news for STM riders

Press release


Metro car replacement contract: good news for STM riders

Montréal, October 5, 2010
The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Société de transport de Montréal, Mr. Michel Labrecque, today visited the Bombardier plant in La Pocatière, on the invitation of Mr. Sam Hamad, Minister of Transport. He saluted the news announced by Premier Jean Charest, under which the STM will be able to sign with the Bombardier Alstom Consortium for the acquisition of 342 metro cars. This order for cars on pneumatic tires is associated with an option to purchase up to 126 additional cars (for a possible total of 468). This rolling stock will replace its 336 MR-63 cars, which have accumulated 44 years of useful service (since October 14, 1966), and part of its 423 MR-73 cars, which have been in services for 29 and 34 years.

“This is good news for STM riders. With this 21st century rolling stock, we can expand our transportation capacity, which is saturated at rush hour, and improve the customer experience with increased comfort and modern information systems, sooner than anticipated. To pursue our objectives of increasing goodwill and improving services, as set out in the Québec Public Transit Policy of the Gouvernement du Québec and the Greater Montréal Area Transportation Plan, the MR-63 cars must be replaced. The issue is to make cars available to put into service every day, while meeting the constantly growing increase in demand. This investment in public transit will benefit all riders in the Greater Montréal region,” Mr. Labrecque explained.

According to a preliminary schedule, the first “boa” train that will be used for testing would be delivered 32 months after the contract is awarded. Subsequently, one nine-car train per month will be delivered and put into service on Line 2 (Orange) in 2014. The Montréal metro will celebrate its 48th birthday that year.

The metro car replacement contract is a major project to which the Gouvernement du Québec contributes 75%. The other 25% share is a ssumed by the Montréal agglomeration.

The Montréal metro provided over 235.2 million trips in 2009, an average of over 800,000 per weekday.

The MR-63 cars were manufactured starting in 1963 by Canadian Vickers and the MR-73 cars were produced by Bombardier, beginning in 1973.

Finally, we should note that according to a benchmarking exercise conducted by Imperial College London, covering 27 of the world’s great subways, Montréal ranked among the most productive in the world. This means that the STM has the highest labour productivity in terms of car kilometres and the lowest operating costs. The STM also stands out from its peers, because even though its cars are among the oldest in the world, their meticulous maintenance by the employees allows them to continue posting a good reliability rate.


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