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Everything posted by Chris_the_traveller

  1. Last November they started using new tap readers. They accept Visa, Mastercard and Amex. So not to worry, you can tap your card on-board.
  2. VIA is starting to place these signs on the aisle seats, to help enforce physical distancing.
  3. I saw their reservation system and I am familiar with the regular schedule. I was just highlighting that this not just a one-off late train, it has been departing Montreal around 8:15pm on several Fridays.
  4. I took a rare trip downtown today and I saw a Skyport coach bus on René-Lévesque going westbound in PM rush. It had an exo sticker on it on the door side. Is Skyport now a regular contractor for exo?
  5. In recent weeks, VIA has been operating the Jonquière/Senneterre trains as an overnight service, using the regular economy class equipment. It leaves Montreal at 8:15pm and then arrives at the northern destination on the Saturday morning. The trainsets return in the night from Sunday to Monday. Not sure how long this will go on for. Not sure if this schedule change was imposed by CN.
  6. I noticed that exo is operating F59PHs on the Mascouche Line instead of the ALP-45DPs. However the ALP-45DPs have remained on the Saint-Hilaire line. Is it more fuel efficient for them to operate F59PHs on the 2-hour long journey from Gare Centrale to Mascouche? I am not certain of what other reasons could have motivated the switch. Also the Pointe-St-Charles facility now seems to be a daytime layover spot for some trainsets.
  7. Back in February I caught the 10:15am train from Ottawa to Montreal on a Sunday morning. This was a Renaissance consist. The 11:20am departure on the same route was an LRC consist. The LRC consist that left Ottawa at 11:20 got to Montréal about an hour earlier than my train did! Apparently, a warning light kept coming on, forcing the engineers to have to stop the train and go inspect one of the cars. After two full stops and as many inspections, we were authorized to continue to Gare Centrale, at reduced speed... From this moment I decided that the solo seat on the Renaissance cars — which I quite enjoy and find to be quite comfortable, for a 2 or 3-hour ride — is not worth it if I can ride on LRC cars instead.
  8. Why are they using some of their newest buses for the mobile clinic?
  9. Also quite possibly the last chance to see our dual mode locomotives used in electric mode.
  10. I have heard rumours of VIA considering running RDCs on the routes to Sarnia or Kitchener in the Corridor, on the Skeena, or on an Eastern Canada daytime route from Halifax to NB, but none of this seems to have actually materialized. Is there any evidence that the Budd cars could come into service on any of these lines in the next few years? Here’s a pic of the Budd cars heading over to Jasper for testing on the Skeena route in 2013: http://www.railpictures.ca/upload/new-power-for-the-skeena-the-rumours-were-true-via-rail-has-sent-2-rdcs-to-jasper-for-testing-and-presumable-use-on-trains-5-and-6-between-jasper-and-prince-rupert-via-6251-and-6219-are-tacked-on
  11. There are a handful of HEP1 cars in regular service on the corridor, so perhaps they are harmonizing the paint scheme with the new paint scheme that has been appearing on the HEP2 cars. However, I would have only estimated that there are about 10-12 HEP1 cars in service on Corridor routes and Northern Quebec routes. Given that they are refurbishing 25 cars at CAD, is it possible that VIA is preparing to replace the Renaissance trainsets in the Corridor with these newly refurbished HEP1s? I have been frequently travelling in the Corridor over the last year or so, and I have often gone out of my way to choose departures likely to have HEP1s to go from Ottawa to Montreal or Montreal to Quebec City, not only because of their old-style charm, but also because of the panoramic windows, extra legroom, and table in the 4-seater section which the service attendant often let me use to work on my laptop. The new seats for the refurbished HEP1s on VIA’s webpage look great.
  12. If there is concern that CDPQ-Infra could condemn the Jonction de l’est and that the Deux-Montagnes rolling stock will be « stuck » on the remaining portion of the Deux-Montagnes subdivision... Maybe exo could send the 700s up there to run the rail shuttle to and from Bois-Franc, as they are nearing the end of their lifespan? If there’s any rolling stock that needs to get scrapped in St-Eustache, I imagine it would be less of a loss to scrap the 700s than the slightly younger MR-90s? This could be done once the new Chinese bilevels are delivered and tested, which should be sometime this year. Once they are ready for revenue service they could replace the 700s on the Candiac line. I think it’s realistic to think that the MR-90s could find a buyer who would operate them a few more years.
  13. Saw the Siemens prototype in Coteau on March 11 and again on the 12th. It says "Caltrans" and "Venture Cars" on the side.
  14. I rode the Deux-Montagnes line today for the first time in a while. I am astonished at how fast work is progressing on the REM. I rode an MR-90 northbound and we had to slow down on the approach to Canora, and while going through the construction sites for both Canora and Mont-Royal stations. Station Correspondance A-40 is also well underway, there are already tracks laid where the Mascouche daytime layover facility is to be, and the base of the station building itself is mounted. There’s also a signal structure that crosses over the new heavy rail tracks. I also noticed the spur at the Jonction de l’est towards Ahuntsic station seems to not be electrified anymore. Can anyone confirm? Do the trains now change from diesel to electric and vice-versa at Canora/Mont-Royal Station? The construction is bittersweet. I wish they would have left the Two Mountains line as a heavy rail line.
  15. They could also just replace the Ocean with a daytime link from Halifax to New Brunswick or possibly Quebec City. VIA is currently studying how to overhaul their maritime services. if the Chaleur comes back I imagine they could put the HEP sleepers back on that route.
  16. Going to Quebec City and just wondering if I should download the RTC Nomade app? Is it any better than Transit? Or will I be ok with Transit app?
  17. Why do all Renaissance trainsets require a service car? Wouldn't it have been in VIA's interest to add some regular seating to these cars in the place of the lounge for Corridor service?
  18. I am onboard VIA 622 and we just passed Via 15. Train 15 was a weird combination of essentially Budd cars with a set of Rens sandwiched in between. There were definitely HEP sleepers as well as HEP economy coaches, but I couldn't tell if there were Ren sleepers as well in the mix. Is this mixball consist a permanent thing or is this temporary because of the recent accident near Halifax or other equipment shortage?
  19. Interesting that they would go into service on the DM line. Maybe they want to retire the MR-90s as soon as the tunnel closes. I hope sooner or later they will add an additional trainset to the VH line for additional service on their new most important line.
  20. Why is RTC purchasing Van Hools, and how many of them did they order?
  21. I imagine the new bilevels exo is supposed to be receiving from China will arrive with the new exo livery and decals.
  22. I saw a series of 39-000 series buses in the Prévost yard on rue Norman in Lachine last Wednesday morning.
  23. What equipment will service the Ocean? I hope that they will be replacing the Renaissance sleepers to improve reliability.
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