The Montréal Métro

Per readers' request, we are taking a look at the Montreal Metro operated by the Société de transport de Montréal (STM) this week.  I was fortunate to have experienced the system twice to connect between the downtown Coach Canada terminal and Gare Centrale at Bonaventure for the Amtrak Adirondack in 2008.  However, the distinct feature of the metro trains in Montreal is very easy to spot.  The train bodies are narrower than the Toronto subway trains (8 ft 2.4 in vs. 10 ft 4 in) and they run on rubber wheels!


Canadian Vickers MR-63, the original metro train in Montreal

The Montreal metro began operation on 14 October 1966.  It was inspired by Paris metro where trains serving some of lines also used rubber wheels.  The metro trains draw electricity from the guide bars beside the rails.  The horizontally placed wheelsroll against the guide bars to guide the trains.  The trains also have conventional flanged steel wheels on standard gauge (4 ft 8.5 in) rails to guide the trains through switches where there are gaps between guide bars to provide clearance to the trains.  The rubber wheels and guide wheels enabled the trains to be able to go around bends faster than conventional trains with only flanged steel wheels.  In regular service, the Montreal metro trains often reach a top speed of 45 mph.   Unlike the TTC subway, the entire Montreal metro system is underground.


Montreal metro tracks and switch

There are currently 2 types of trains used in the Montreal metro system, the Canadian Vickers MR-63 from 1966 (one of the oldest metro trains in North America still in service) and the Bombardier MR-73 from 1976.

If there are no other requests, I will talk about one of my favourite locomotives next week.  It is elegant and beautiful (some people may have completely opposite views, which is fine), fast and powerful, and the roar of its FDL engine is music to my ears.  It is the P42DC Genesis diesel-electric locomotive designed by General Electric and Krupp Verkehrstechnik (Germany) for passenger service (the model number already gave half of the information away if you remember what I posted last week).

Comments

Bernard said…
i'm so exited with locomotive. do you think that old locomotive can give their best performance? what is your opinion about train accident?
Um... I'm not quite sure what you mean by giving their best performance, but I think if designed and tested properly, any locomotive will do.

I don't really have a take on train accidents at the moment, it certainly doesn't affect my decision on what mode of transportation to choose if rail is an option though.
John Mac said…
That's a great post on Rail Transportation In Montreal . Thanks for sharing it.

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