Still no service launch date for the REM
We will still have to wait before boarding the REM.
The Réseau express métropolitain (REM) is preparing to connect the South Shore of Montreal to the main destinations in the city after months of waiting. REM vice-president of operations, Denis Andlauer, said the network was ready to welcome users. However, it will take a little more patience. Testing will continue for several weeks to ensure user safety.
“There is still a long way to go,” Andlauer acknowledged, while assuring that there will be “no third postponement”. The final checks are to ensure that the system “bugs out”. They shouldn't last more than a few weeks, according to the VP of Operations.
The workshop’ maintenance located in Brossard houses 54 trains of two cars each. Photo: Clément Bolano, Metro Media
Rush hours require at least 14 trains in operation. Photo: Clément Bolano, Métro Média
The project is one of the largest automated transport networks in the world. The construction of five stations between Brossard and downtown has been completed and the project is currently in the test phase.
There are drastic changes in habit for customers to which we will inevitably have to adjust, to be sure that we are responding to demand and correcting imperfections.
Denis Andlauer, Vice-President operation of the REM.
Denis Andlauer, vice-president of REM operations. Photo: Clément Bolano, Métro Média
Most train parts will be changed on site in Brossard. Photo: Clément Bolano, Metro Media
A break-in period of several weeks will follow the opening of the REM to the public, he specified. This should last at most until September. This will allow teams to spot additional breakages, such as the opening of doors.
A “central brain” to drive the REM
Commuters will be able to easily access Brossard station via Boulevard de Rome, the new Autoroute 10 on-ramp and exit, as well as the existing Autoroute 30 on-ramp and exit. take a cycle path that connects boulevard de Rome to the station.
Each train has 25% seats. Photo: Clément Bolano, Metro Media
Here's what the cars look like inside. Photo: Clément Bolano, Métro Média
The Brossard station was designed to provide convenience and comfort to users. It has a vast park and ride with nearly 3,000 spaces and a large bus station with 21 platforms.
Since the REM is an automated system, each train is driverless. The network is controlled by a central “brain” and monitored around the clock by employees.
Automated trains are controlled from this checkpoint. Photo: Clément Bolano, Metro Media
This is where REM trains are brought for minor repairs. Photo: Clément Bolano, Métro Média
For heavier maintenance work, operations will be carried out in Saint-Eustache.
From Brossard to Central Station in less than 20 minutes
Trains will run every two and a half minutes at peak times and every five minutes at off-peak hours, providing a high frequency. Two-car trains are preferred, so customers know the next train will arrive in a few minutes.
The Brossard station is very advantageous from the point of view of travel time. In just 16 minutes, commuters can get to Central Station, McGill is only 18 minutes away and Édouard-Montpetit is 21 minutes away. The travel time between Brossard station and Montreal-Trudeau airport will be approximately 43 minutes in 2027, when the project is completed, and to reach Deux-Montagnes, it will take approximately 51 minutes.
The stations are equipped with automated doors. Photo: Clément Bolano, Metro Media
No escalators, but there are several elevators spread throughout the Brossard station. Photo: Clément Bolano, Metro Media
The trains are air-conditioned in summer, heated in winter and equipped with a WiFi network. In an emergency, if one train breaks down, the next one is strong enough to push or pull it to the next station. Two emergency generators have also been installed in the event of an ice storm.
At the moment, the project is in a pre-run phase, “a commercial service, but without customers”. Trains run on the network as they would normally, from morning until evening, with a frequency of 3 min 30 s at peak times or 7 min 30 s the rest of the time. However, we will still have to wait before we can embark on it.
The service should be launched later this year. Photo: Clément Bolano, Métro Média
There will be no drivers on the trains. Photo: Clément Bolano, Metro Media