The STM is confirming there was modification work done on the metro system to accomodate the new Bombardier-Alstom metro cars that will be entering service in the next few years, but they say there won't be any new delays because of it.
A report in the Journal de Montréal this morning suggested the new vehicles were larger and heavier than the cars they would be replacing, requiring significant modifications.
STM chairman Carl Desrosiers says work has already been carried out to shave down a part of the metro tunnel — but the affected area only accounted for a small part of the network.
"We measured the tunnel with laser beams, the entire 71 kilometre [network], and we only found 200 metres — 0.3 per cent of the tunnels — where we had to remove a little bit of concrete in order to be totally safe," Desrosiers says.
There had been a concern that the new cars could tilt over and hit the tunnel walls if there's a flat or a suspension problem.
The new cars, dubbed Azur by the transit corporation, weigh in at 240 tons each, 13 tons more than the old MR-63 cars they will replace — which has forced the STM to reinforce the tracks as well.
The STM suggests they were aware of the modifications that needed to be done, and suggest they're still on track to have the whole fleet in operation by September 2018, as planned.
The first of the cars will be delivered this coming Monday, to begin months of testing before the enter service. The new cars are expected to begin transporting passesngers by the end of 2014 — at the earliest.