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Montreal’s commuter train network promises to improve services

WATCH: Riders on Montreal's RTM commuter train are expecting to benefit from massive infrastructure investments. As Global's Tim Sargeant reports, the goal is to improve reliability.

Riders on Montreal’s Réseau de transport métropolitain (RTM) commuter train are expecting to benefit from massive infrastructure investments meant to improve time performance and train reliability.

READ MORE: Montrealers trapped on stalled RTM train for hours; getting home after midnight

There is a plan to inject $450 million over the next five years on the rolling stock, operations and maintenance.

READ MORE: Montreal train delays create frustration: ‘It’s just a system people can’t rely on’

As an incentive to keep using the public transit system, riders will be offered a 30 per cent rebate on one monthly pass or six free train tickets to compensate for delays earlier this year.

READ MORE: Montreal commuters furious as cold weather delays RTM trains

Some of the details include:

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  • Installing new electrical components on the Deux-Montagnes line switching system to prevent snow buildup that could freeze over.
  • Strengthening railway bridges.
  • Adding storage tracks, locomotive tests and reproofing buildings at the Lachine Maintenance Centre to improve maintenance and reliability.
  • Assigning staff to strategic locations during the winter to prevent delays caused by switching and signalling problems.
  • Performing maintenance work on one quarter of the 400 switches on the network before winter 2018-2019.
  • Adding electrical heating elements to 20 cold air blowers on the Deux-Montagnes line.
  • Installing 27 switch heaters to be installed on five lines.
  • Upgrading existing MR-90 trains on the Deux-Montagnes line.
  • Replacing 30-year-old locomotives with 10 new ones with lower greenhouse emissions.

The Deux-Montagnes line represents 40 per cent of ridership on all six lines of the RTM.

READ MORE: Public transport gets boost in Longueuil, Vaudreuil

It has not benefited from any new investments in infrastructure or rolling stock in 23 years.