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VIA Rail to undergo federally funded infrastructure improvements


Over the next two years, the Canadian government plans to invest $102 million (in Canadian dollars) to support several infrastructure improvement projects for VIA Rail Canada Inc.

The projects are aimed at reducing delays and improving safety and accessibility along the passenger railroad's Ottawa-Montreal corridor, officials from Transport Canada said in a press release.

As part of the initiative, crews will upgrade track and bridges between the cities; build a new siding in the Barrhaven area of Ottawa; repair piers and abutments in Alexandria, Ont.; upgrade centralized traffic control signals; and perform other infrastructure-related tasks.

In addition, the funds will allow VIA Rail to begin using the new Renaissance car fleet along the corridor to enhance accessibility, Transport Canada officials said.

The infrastructure upgrades are estimated to create more than 2,000 jobs throughout the project period.

"Thanks to this new funding, VIA Rail will be able to provide a safer, more reliable and comfortable service between Ottawa and Montreal through upgraded infrastructure and enhanced facilities at our Ottawa station," said VIA Rail President and Chief Executive Officer Yves Desjardins-Siciliano, adding that the railroad will also be able to add two return trips between the cities in 2017.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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