Five in running for $4bn Montreal light rail scheme

A shortlist of five has been announced for a US$4bn light rail scheme that will connect the east and west suburbs of Montreal, in the Canadian province of Quebec.

The electrified, computer-controlled line will run for 67km between 24 new and existing stations from South Shore to Trudeau airport and West Island.  

The scheme is being developed by the public pension fund manager the Caisse de Dépôt du Québec, which is also putting up US$2.2bn of the necessary investment.

The work is being split into two contracts, one to build the infrastructure and one to supply the equipment that will use it. Two consortiums are bidding for the track, one led by SNC-Lavalin and Aecon and the other headed by WSP Global and Parsons.

The path of the light rail is shown in purple

Of the three groups competing to supply trains, one is composed of Parson, Hyundai Rotem and Thales Canada; another is led by Bombardier Transportation; and the third is made up of Alstom Transport Canada and SNC-Lavalin.

Construction is expected to begin next spring and to be complete in 2020 – a tight schedule. Each team now has six months to tell the Caisse how they will meet it.

Top image: Downtown Montreal (Anna Kucsma/Creative Commons)

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  1. Is it now time to get past the French Michelin lobby and build this new line as conventional steel wheels on steel rails and upgrade the rest of the system to steel rails. Everything will be improved and less expensive.

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