MONTREAL — Service on the first segment of Montreal’s Réseau express métropolitain light rail system could begin within 30 to 45 days, CTV News reports.
REM officials shared that news with public transportation areas on Monday as they said the final phase of testing would begin Wednesday on the 10.3-mile, six-station segment between Central Station and Broussard on Montreal’s South Shore.
That final phase of testing will involve simulated service without passengers, with frequencies mimicking those of actual operation, system builder CDPQ Infra said in a press release.
Several days of testing are planned. Once results are evaluated, a start date will be announced.
The C$6.9 billion project, announced in 2016, originally aimed to open its first segment in 2020. The builders have said delays are because of issues including the pandemic, a labor shortage, and problems in converting the 3.3-mile Mount Royal tunnel from commuter rail to light rail use. Most of the rest of the 42-mile, 26-station system is expected to open by late 2024, although the last piece, to Montreal’s Trudeau Airport, isn’t expected to be completed until 2027.