A new deadline will be announced for the Montreal light rail system

Opening of the first segment postponed from December to spring 2023

Wagons for Montreal’s REM light rail system will be tested in 2021. A new time frame for opening the system will be announced today, according to media reports. Alstom/C. Fleury via the REM Facebook page

MONTREAL — Authorities will today announce another postponement of the opening of Montreal’s Réseau Express Métropolitain light rail system, according to media reports.

The Montreal Gazette, citing reports from La Presse and Radio-Canada, the French-language branch of CBC, says the first section of the system between Montreal’s central station and the municipality of Brossard on the South Shore will not be open until the spring. The opening was scheduled for December.

The CBC reports the delay is bad news for South Shore commuters, as significant delays are to be expected when province closes three lanes of the Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine tunnel of the Trans-Canada Highway — a journey of 120,000 vehicles per day — for maintenance work lasting at least three years. The start date of the closure will be announced soon and is expected to last until the end of 2025.

This will be the third delay in opening the initial segment, which was originally scheduled to enter service in late 2021. The rest of the system, which was originally scheduled to open in phases from fall 2023, is now expected to open all at once end of 2024 [see “Opening of Montreal light rail system delayed,” Trains News Wire, June 21, 2022].

Jose P. Rogers