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Rail News: Canadian National Railway - CN

CN, CDPQ reach Montreal track agreement for REM project


The Canadian infrastructure investment fund CDPQ Infra has entered into an agreement with CN to acquire the aerial structure leading to Central Station from CN in Montreal, the parties announced yesterday.

The agreement marks a major step in the development of the Reseau electrique metropolitain (REM) as a unified system with Central Station serving as the intermodal hub linking four metropolitan branches, CN and CDPQ Infra officials said in a press release.

The agreement allows the REM to use Central Station and run under CN's tracks in the Pointe-Saint-Charles sector. As a result of the arrangement, CDPQ Infra will be able to minimize the project's impact on historic buildings and other commercial and residential facilities.

The pact provides for CDPQ's acquisition of land, buildings, structures, bridges and rail infrastructure between Bridge and Saint-Antoine streets in the city's central area. The agreement will not affect the station's use by Agence metropolitaine de transport's Mont-Saint-Hilaire line, Amtrak or VIA Rail.

"This agreement crystalizes the vision we had for the REM, that of a unified system, integrated into the urban fabric," said Macky Tall, CDPQ's president and chief executive officer. "We are truly grateful for CN's collaboration in helping us find solutions, particularly in facilitating the REM's access to Central Station, the network hub."

Announced earlier this year, the REM is a proposed 42-mile electric light-rail network that will link downtown Montreal, other city areas and the airport. Environmental impact hearings for the project are scheduled to begin Aug. 29.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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