STM requests replacement of MR-73 vehicles

The Société de Transport de Montréal (STM) estimates that the arrival of the Réseau express metro (REM) from the east will lead to an increase of about 4,000 peak-hour passengers on the metro’s green line. It should be able to accommodate this increase in ridership, but work needs to start quickly to replace the old MR-73 carriages with Azur trains, the STM warns.

In a preliminary analysis report published on Friday, at the same time as the REM de l’Est task force report, the STM shows that the current capacity of the green line is 23,300 passengers at peak times. 18500 passengers.

According to STM, the capacity of the green line can be increased by 37% by 8,700 passengers thanks to various measures, including increasing the service frequency and replacing the MR-73 cars with larger-capacity boa-type Azur cars.

“The metro’s green line still has significant residual capacity, which should be sufficient for at least a decade,” the report notes, adding that with the arrival of REM from the East, it will be necessary to accelerate the placement of stations. new measures to increase their potential. The acquisition of the necessary Azur trains in 2036 at the latest should allow to respond to the increase in passenger numbers after the commissioning of the REM de l’Est, it is assumed.

But to replace MR-73, which will end its service life in 2036, the STM will have to build a new Beaugrand complex and replace the rear station and the Angrignon garage. “The set of solutions to be put in place represents a significant modernization project for the green line and the entire Montreal metro network. This project will allow to increase the capacity of the green line, while maintaining its reliability, improving its operation and improving the customer experience.”

Replacing the MR-73s will not be easy. Therefore, the STM recommends starting the planning of the MR-73 replacement project from 2023, as well as the studies necessary to determine the deadlines. He suggests the creation of a project office as soon as possible for this purpose. The replacement of 360 MR-73 cars alone is estimated to cost $2.9 billion, which includes the construction of the Beaugrand complex (700 million), the modification of the rear station and the addition of the Angrignon garage (300 million). in addition to changing train control on the green line (1.5 billion).

Several scenarios for Eastern REM

A task force led by the Autorité régionale de l’Est tasked by the Legault government to examine several scenarios for the future REM de l’Est also released its preliminary report on Friday.

He first focused on the main branches, one in the north at Cégep Marie-Victorin and the other in the east at Pointe-aux-Trembles.

It should be recalled that in May 2022, the city of Quebec withdrew the REM de l’Est project from the hands of CDPQ Infra to entrust it to ARTM, and at the same time amputated the aerial part located in the center of the city. caused strong opposition.

The Committee considers that the Lacordaire axis, i.e. the northern branch from the Cégep Marie-Victorin, does not present any major problems, as it is already planned underground, which promotes better urban integration. The quality of the rock in this sector should not be a problem for tunnel construction, we add.

As Transport Minister for Sustainable Mobility Geneviève Guilbault noted on Monday, the aerial REM option in the Mercier-Est sector was abandoned “given the main challenges of urban integration and acceptability in the Mercier sector”. In this regard, the working group investigated several tunnel scenarios, one on the axis of rue Sherbrooke and the other on the axis of rue Hochelaga connecting to L’Assomption metro station. The first option on the Sherbrooke axis will allow a connection to Honoré-Beaugrand station.

Further east, towards Pointe-aux-Trembles, the working group investigated the weather REM scenario.

Overall, the committee estimates the expected number of passengers at peak times for the future REM de l’Est at 18,800 passengers and estimates a modal transfer of 19% of users who will leave their cars for public transit.


The task force was also tasked with exploring future expansion of the project in Rivière-des-Prairies, Laval and Lanaudière. A REM to Boulevard Rodolphe-Forget will increase the number of passengers by 4,000, an increase of 20%. The addition of passengers in the direction of Laval will vary between 1,000 and 1,800 additional users, depending on the sector served. With a section of 19.7 km and 2 stations in addition to the three existing stations, the increase towards Lanaudiere is estimated at 2100 users. “However, this additional 2,100 users remains relatively low compared to other components of the project, given the length of the extension to be constructed and operated,” the report said.

The automated REM towards Mascouche could not use the existing Canadian National tracks.

The final report of the working group is expected in June next year.

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