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Montreal REM

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  • Montreal REM

    So Montreal's Reseau Express Metropolitan (REM) has been under construction since 2016. It's probably the single biggest rail project in Canada right now in scale, if not dollar value, but has been surprisingly quiet despite the impact it will have to the region.

    A short rundown on the stats:

    Total length: 67 km
    Number of stations: 26
    Frequency (peak/non-peak): 5/15 mins (2.5/5 mins for downtown tunnel)
    Operating hours: 5 am - 1 am, 7 days per week
    Max Capacity: 780 people per 4 car trainset
    Projected ridership: 200,000/day
    Cost: 6.3 Billion CAD

    Some selling points:

    Fully grade separated!
    Driverless trains!
    Network-wide Wifi!
    Seamless transfers to Bus/Rail/Metro!
    Platform Screen Doors!

    The network will be opened in phases from 2021-2023:

    The REM is Montreal's answer to the 'missing middle' option between regional commuter rail and urban metro service. While it is referred to as light rail in both official and press media, it and the Skytrain are more properly defined as 'Medium Rail Transit' systems. The system length is some 67 km long at full buildout, comparable to that of the entire Skytrain network prior to the Evergreen extension opening, but with around half the number of stations at 26. This shouldn't come as much of a surprise as the REM is, at its core, a conversion of commuter rail to metro operations.

    Schematically, the REM comprises the following:

    - The 31 km Deux-Montagnes trunk line, a conversion of the existing commuter rail line of the same name, as well as the Mount Royal tunnel through downtown;
    - The 15 km South Shore branch, which is a new-build extension of the trunk line from Central Station to the South Shore suburbs and crossing the St. Lawrence River on reserved lanes in the new Champlain bridge;
    - The 16 km Saint-Anne-De-Bellevue branch, which resurrects the Doney spur line to provide metro service to the West Island suburbs; and
    - The 5 km Airport branch, a new-build spur to YUL.

    The trainsets are the driverless Alstom Metropolis sets, the same type used in the Sydney Metro (another commuter-to-metro conversion of similar scope), but in a four car configuration rather than Sydney's six (two cars during non-peak). The system will be constructed to handle future increases in capacity and frequency to suit ridership demands and is also the biggest P3 project in Quebec's history at 6.3 billion dollars. The contracts are split into two main packages, EPC for construction/design and TSSOM for operations/maintenance; both were awarded to consortiums led by SNC-Lavelin.
    Last edited by Foolworm; 19-02-2019, 04:33 PM.

  • #2
    Montreal is spread out with the island and the suburbs on both sides of the St. Lawrence. This could be helpful.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.


    • #3
      I spent some time in Montreal last summer. That Gare Central is something else!

      But YUL has been looking for this train connection for a long time:


      • #4
        I just back from a week in Montreal. Gare Centrale is great. Conference at the Queen Elizabeth and stayed at the Bonaventure of the other side of the station. Both connected to Underground City. Lots of people. Open through the night. Never felt the least bit concerned about safety. Funny how in Montreal the huge Underground City and the surface sidewalks can bothe be full of people, even at -20 and yet in Edmonton both seem empty at the best of times.


        • #5
          Montreal is a different class of city. Honestly, if my French wasn't half bad, I'd try to move there.

          It has a much more cohesive feel as a city than Toronto or Vancouver.

          For a city of its size, commutes aren't that bad and living is affordable.

          They made great infrastructure decisions back in the 60s and 70s and have a great network in terms of commuter rail, metro and freeways. Although it's starting to crumble...also cue "equalization"


          • #6
            Back in the 60s and early 70s, Montreal was the largest city in Canada. The financial capital, the insurance capital, the fashion & shopping capital, the center of shipping, rail and manufacturing in Canada. Then the combination of the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway, the Quiet Revolution, the political unrest, sovereignty and the resulting exodus of unilingual English speaking workers and businessmen in the mid-70's sealed Montreal's status in Canada.

            Since then, the city has grown by one million while Toronto grew by 3 million.

            I really enjoy living in Montreal for the past 6 years even though I only speak English. I get by very well except on occasion in the east end of Montreal or in the countryside. My wife is from Montreal and is totally bilingual. I am glad that the REM line is being built as one station will be within walking distance and will increase the value of my home. It will allow us to go downtown or many parts of the city without using a car.
            Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.


            • #7
              They're putting in a huge plaza at Place Ville Marie, right across from the Queen Elizabeth. Much more open than the one in the Ice district will be.

              I'm always equal parts amused and disappointed when you get people in Alberta bashing Quebec as being unfriendly. The people couldn't have been nicer. Even when their English isn't all that great, they went out of their way to be helpful. Of course, a bonjour or merci from us went a long way as well.

              And one great thing, downtown at least, is a relative lack of chain restaurants. Lots of places with great sandwiches and other baked goods and we only saw one Tims. The local places are fresher and have a much greater selection. Nice contrast to Edmonton where people think that the chains coming in is a good thing.


              • #8
                Montreal's REM line going fast forward. They have already assembled the first of two, 550 ton 100 meter long elevated assembly cranes.


                Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.


                • #9
                  The COE LRT bosses always state that building elevated or underground costs 3 times as much as at grade.

                  Well, contrary to that mantra, Montreal is build 13.4 km of elevated line to fast track construction, reduce congestion during and after construction, and keep costs low.
                  Trains on the network will be fully automated and driverless, and it would become the fourth longest automated transportation system in the world,

                  REM crews using advanced techniques to quickly build kilometres of elevated tracks

                  Stefan Balan is leading the construction of the spurs that will reach Trudeau airport and Ste. Anne de Bellevue.

                  "This was chosen after a very meticulous process of analysis so given the fact that we are building a very long alignment, a 13.4-kilometre bridge if you want, from here [in St. Laurent] to Ste. Anne de Bellevue, this method proved to be the optimal one," said Balan.

                  Using traditional building techniques it would have taken about three weeks just to do each section of the structure.

                  Instead Balan said that by using the gantry currently in St. Laurent, and a second one that is slowly heading west from Pointe-Claire, it should take about three weeks to build the entire support structure consisting of more than 4,000 concrete segments out to the Ste. Anne station.
                  Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.


                  • #10
                    One would be very naive not to think that the Poutine eating Mob bosses in that Mafia cesspool wouldn't add "incidental billions" to the overall price tag.......research what the Boston mafia added to the "set price tag" of their "Big Dig."


                    • #11
                      Even with the Poutine eating Mob bosses , why are construction costs not 300% more like the Beef eating Mob bosses in that COE Administration cesspool keep stating?

                      The $6.3 billion project will extend and branch the current line, adding 14 stations 37 kilometers of automated line with ZERO at grade crossings will be added to the existing 29.9 km and the existing lines will be upgraded and automated with revamps of several stations. Existing sections will also have some double track added. Max line speed will be 100kph and 212 automated Alstom Metropolis vehicles will be used. At least 13.4 km of elevated lines, 3.5km of tunneling are required.

                      One of the underground stations will be very, very deep.

                      20 metres down, 50 more to go: Crews make way for Édouard-Montpetit REM station
                      Station will be about 21 storeys below Montreal for the incoming light-rail network

                      70 meters down through solid granite

                      Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.


                      • #12
                        ^ ^^^

                        it looks like a lovely system. it should be at roughly 94 million per km.

                        edmonton's valley line west is estimated to come in at roughly 31 million per km and includes more stations per km.

                        how is that not three times as much?
                        "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by kcantor View Post
                          ^ ^^^

                          it looks like a lovely system. it should be at roughly 94 million per km.

                          edmonton's valley line west is estimated to come in at roughly 31 million per km and includes more stations per km.

                          how is that not three times as much?
                          That's kind of what I was wondering.
                          There was no need to change that plaque. We are the City of Champions.


                          • #14
                            um, here's the actual breakdown.
                            rem: 6.3 billion divided by 67km is approx. 94 million per km
                            valley line (entire line): 4.5b divided by 27km is approx 166m per km (west phase 2 is $190m per km). ($2.67b divided by 14km)

                            and the winner is?? rem!
                            Last edited by thatguy; 19-06-2019, 07:29 PM.


                            • #15
                              How so?

                              Edmonton's valley line (phase 1) to Millwoods is 13.1 km long and costs $1.8 billion. If my calculator is working correctly, that is $137.4 million per kilometer.

                              The 14 km west phase 2 to Lewis Estates is estimated at $2.7 billion. Getting out my calculator, that works out to $192.9 million per kilometer. And none of the trains are automated and much of the line includes at grade crossings that interfere with normal traffic, pedestrians and slow the average speed to about 32kph and lowers frequency of service as well as capacity.

                              Can you show us your math calculations and data sources on how you got such a low cost of $31m per km?

                              Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.