VIA Rail Canada 'Renaissance' car

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The VIA Rail Canada Renaissance cars were built in 1995-96 by Metropolitan-Cammell (later Alstom) in England for use on the aborted "Nightstar" trans-Chunnel overnight trains between London, England and points on the Continent. The project was shelved in 1996 for a number of reasons, most notably the rise of inexpensive short-haul flights in Europe. VIA Rail was able to purchase the shells of the cars - only a small number of the actual fleet was completed - that were put into storage at a reduced price.

VIA Rail

Three cars were brought to Canada for modification and testing in June 2000. After several rounds of testing, VIA Rail announced that they had purchased the entire 139 car fleet on December 15, 2000. Shortly thereafter, cars started to leave their points of storage in England and were shipped to Bombardier in Thunder Bay for modification, and in the cases of many sleeper shells, conversion to baggage cars and diners. Over the course of three years, 106 cars were outshopped by Bombardier. Thirty-three cars remain in storage in Thunder Bay.

The cars have been far from reliable. They have undergone numerous modification campaigns, the most recent ones being undertaken by Industrial Rail Services, Inc. (IRSI) in Moncton, N.B. Beginning in 2009, IRSI began the modification of 21 cars to make them more accessible to persons with disabilities.

Baggage cars

  • All baggage cars were rebuilt from sleeper car shells.
  • As far as can be ascertained, cars never wore their assigned numbers.
VIA Rail
Current Number
Thumbnail Original UIC Number VIA Rail
Assigned Number*
Notes
7001 VIA Rail Canada 7001-a.jpg 61 19 70-90 067-0 7585
7002 61 19 70-90 061-3 7579
7003 VIA Rail Canada 7003-a.jpg 61 19 70-90 068-8 7586
7004 VIA Rail Canada 7004-a.jpg 61 19 70-90 058-9 7576
7005 61 19 70-90 049-8 7567
7007 61 19 70-90 041-5 7559
  • Modified with large sliding baggage door.
7008 61 19 70-90 043-1 7561
7009 61 19 70-90 044-9 7562
7011 61 19 70-90 047-2 7565

Club Cars & Coaches

Interior of a Renaissance Coach looking through the passenger cabin.

7100-7113

  • Some cars are being modified as handicapped accessible cars and will carry 5 digit numbers by inserting 0 in the 2nd number field. (i.e. 7111 becomes 70111).
  • Club cars are 7101, 7103, 7105, 7107, 7109 & 7113. Remainder are coaches.
  • Club cars feature 48 seats in a 2+1 configuration. Meals are prepared in the adjoining Service car. Club cars are identical to coaches.
  • As far as can be ascertained, cars never wore their assigned numbers.
VIA Rail
Current Number
Thumbnail Original UIC Number VIA Rail
Assigned Number*
Notes
7100 61 19 20-90 008-5 7222
7101 61 19 20-90 025-9 7237
  • Wears VIA1 branding.
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7102 61 19 20-90 004-4 7217
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7103 61 19 20-90 042-4 7244
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.
7104 61 19 20-90 015-0 7226
7105 VIA Rail Canada 7105-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 024-2 7205
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.
7106 61 19 20-90 010-1 7223
7107 61 19 20-90 028-3 7240
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.
7108 61 19 20-90 013-5 7225
7109 61 19 20-90 037-4 7212
7110 61 19 20-90 002-8 7215
70111 VIA Rail Canada 70111-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 036-6 7211
  • Renumbered to 70111 to indicate handicapped accessible car.
7112 61 19 20-90 016-8 7227
  • Modified air intakes.
7113 61 19 20-90 026-7 7238
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.

7200-7232

  • Some cars are being modified as handicapped accessible cars and will carry 5 digit numbers by inserting 0 in the 2nd number field. (i.e. 7217 becomes 70217).
  • Club cars are 7201, 7204, 7214, 7216, 7218, 7219, & 7221. Remainder are coaches.
  • Coaches feature 48 seats in a 2+1 configuration. Meals are prepared in the adjoining Service car. Club cars are identical to coaches.
  • As far as can be ascertained, cars never wore their assigned numbers.
VIA Rail
Current Number
Thumbnail Original UIC Number VIA Rail
Assigned Number*
Notes
7200 61 19 20-90 029-1 7200
7201 61 19 20-90 043-2 7245
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.
7202 61 19 20-90 009-3 7202
7203 VIA Rail Canada 7203-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 011-9 7203
7204 61 19 20-90 014-3 7204
7205 61 19 20-90 023-4 7236
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7206 61 19 20-90 031-7 7206
7207 VIA Rail Canada 7207-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 032-5 7207
7208 61 19 20-90 033-3 7208
7209 61 19 20-90 034-1 7209
7210 61 19 20-90 035-8 7210
7211 61 19 20-90 030-9 7241
7212 VIA Rail Canada 7212-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 038-2 7242
7213 61 19 20-90 040-8 7213
7214 61 19 20-90 001-0 7214
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.
7215 61 19 20-90 041-6 7243
7216 VIA Rail Canada 7216-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 003-6 7216
7217 61 19 20-90 046-5 7235
7218 61 19 20-90 047-3 7218
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.
7219 61 19 20-90 005-1 7219
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7220 61 19 20-90 006-9 7220
7221 61 19 20-90 007-7 7221
  • Car wears VIA1 branding.
7222 61 19 20-90 022-6 7234
7223 61 19 20-90 027-5 7239
7224 VIA Rail Canada 7224-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 012-7 7224
7225 61 19 20-90 039-0 7201
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7226 61 19 20-90 044-0 7246
7227 61 19 20-90 017-6 7228
7228 VIA Rail Canada 7228-a.jpg 61 19 20-90 021-8 7233
7229 61 19 20-90 018-4 7229
7230 61 19 20-90 045-7 7230
7231 61 19 20-90 019-2 7231
7232 61 19 20-90 020-0 7232

Service cars

  • Service cars feature a lounge for 20 people, a food preparation area and a single wheelchair-accessible bedroom.
  • As far as can be ascertained, cars never wore their assigned numbers.
VIA Rail
Current Number
Thumbnail Original UIC Number VIA Rail
Assigned Number*
Notes
7300 VIA Rail Canada 7300-a.jpg 61 19 89-90 003-4 7300
7301 61 19 89-90 005-9 7301
7302 61 19 89-90 002-6 7302
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7303 61 19 89-90 006-7 7303
7304 61 19 89-90 004-2 7304
7305 61 19 89-90 001-8 7305
7306 61 19 89-90 007-5 7306
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7307 61 19 89-90 008-3 7307
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7308 61 19 89-90 010-9 7352
7309 61 19 89-90 020-8 7309
7310 VIA Rail Canada 7310-a.jpg 61 19 89-90 018-2 7350
7311 61 19 89-90 009-1 7351
7312 61 19 89-90 013-3 7355
7313 61 19 89-90 011-7 7353
7314 61 19 89-90 016-6 7358
7315 VIA Rail Canada 7315-a.jpg 61 19 89-90 019-0 7308
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7316 61 19 89-90 014-1 7356
  • Modified air intakes.
  • Currently stored at TMC.

Diners

  • Dining cars have seating for 48 people. All meals are prepared in the two adjoining Service cars. All dining cars were rebuilt from sleeper car shells.
  • As far as can be ascertained, cars never wore their assigned numbers.
VIA Rail
Current Number
Thumbnail Original UIC Number VIA Rail
Assigned Number*
Notes
7400 VIA Rail Canada 7400-a.jpg 61 19 70-90 045-6 7563
7401 61 19 70-90 072-0 7590
7402 61 19 70-90 066-2 7584
  • Modified air intakes.

Sleepers

  • Sleepers have 10 double bedrooms, 4 of which feature ensuite showers.
  • As far as can be ascertained, cars never wore their assigned numbers.
VIA Rail
Current Number
Thumbnail Original UIC Number VIA Rail
Assigned Number*
Notes
7500 61 19 70-90 029-0 7500
7501 61 19 70-90 005-0 7501
7502 61 19 70-90 035-7 7526
7503 61 19 70-90 002-7 7503
7504 61 19 70-90 003-5 7504
7505 61 19 70-90 004-3 7505
7506 61 19 70-90 024-1 7506
7507 61 19 70-90 023-3 7507
7508 61 19 70-90 028-2 7508
7509 61 19 70-90 025-8 7509
7510 61 19 70-90 031-6 7510
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7511 61 19 70-90 032-4 7511
7512 61 19 70-90 001-9 7512
7513 61 19 70-90 006-8 7513
7514 VIA Rail Canada 7514-a.jpg 61 19 70-90 007-2 7514
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7515 61 19 70-90 033-2 7502
7516 61 19 70-90 011-8 7550
7517 61 19 70-90 019-1 7517
7518 61 19 70-90 020-9 7518
7519 61 19 70-90 037-3 7519
7520 61 19 70-90 022-5 7520
7521 61 19 70-90 021-7 7521
7522 61 19 70-90 027-4 7522
7523 61 19 70-90 026-6 7523
  • Currently stored at TMC.
7524 61 19 70-90 030-8 7524
7525 61 19 70-90 034-0 7525
7526 61 19 70-90 008-4 7515

Transition cars

  • Transition cars are used to connect a Park Car to the rest of the Ocean trainset when Renaissance cars are used.
  • Cars have been finished inside with carpeted floors and walls, and feature painted scenes of the Maritimes along the walls.
  • All Transition cars were originally baggage cars, and were rebuilt from sleeper car shells.
  • As far as can be ascertained, cars never wore their assigned numbers.
VIA Rail
Current Number
Thumbnail Original UIC Number VIA Rail
Assigned Number*
Notes
7600 61 19 70-90 042-3 7560
  • Originally baggage 7000.
7601 61 19 70-90 069-6 7587
  • Originally baggage 7006.
7602 61 19 70-90 046-4 7564
  • Originally baggage 7010.

References

Canadian Trackside Guide
Personal info and sightings


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