For train commuters at the Roxboro-Pierrefonds train station Monday morning, a double-decker train was a sight for sore eyes.
“I’m very happy,” said commuter Sandy Weigens.
“It’s about time that they react to what’s happening with the trains,” said commuter Danny Dion.
The commuters say it’s a step in the right direction to help ease the backlog after a string of breakdowns and delays, as well as packed trains — even when they are on time.
“It’s very encouraging. This is a sign the RTM is being responsive,” Weigens said.
On Friday, Raymond Bachant, director general and head of Montreal’s commuter train network told Global News the Réseau de transport métropolitain (RTM) would be testing double-decker trains on the Deux-Montagnes line to address the recent delays to the service.
After successful tests, the double-decker train took passengers to and from the city on Monday.
It has six departures throughout the day:
- 5:50 a.m. train 920 toward Montreal
- 6:45 a.m. train 921 toward Deux-Montagnes
- 8:05 a.m. train 930 toward Montreal
- 3:45 p.m. train 941 toward Deux-Montagnes
- 4:43 p.m. train 950 toward Montreal
- 5:50 p.m. train 951 toward Deux-Montagnes
There is one 10-car double-decker train made up of cars taken from the other train lines.
“We’re going to take one car from here and there,” Bachant told Global News on Friday. “It’s a temporary measure we’re going to put in place.”
The double-decker train will only be on the Deux-Montagnes line while the regular rolling stock is undergoing repairs and upgrades in order to better deal with winter weather.
“Hopefully the other trains will be repaired and in good working order for the rest of the winter,” said commuter Robert Servranckx on Monday morning.
Some commuters wish double-decker trains would be the norm on the Deux-Montagnes line.
“I’m hoping that not just two or three trains per morning or afternoon departure, but the entire run might eventually be double-deckers,” Weigens said.
The RTM tells Global News they ordered 24 double-decker cars from Chinese company CRRC last spring. Those trains won’t be in use on the Deux-Montagnes line until at least 2020.
RTM has also added more maintenance workers throughout the train network.
At least one single-deck train on the Deux-Montagnes line was delayed by 35 minutes Monday morning.