Analysis of the PTI 2008-2010 from the AMT
The AMT published their Programme Triennal d’Immobilisations for 2008- 2010 back in November. Here are my thoughts:
SLR Over the Champlain Bridge
After unveiling the preliminary study back in March, this project seems to have completely disappeared. No mention of it is to be found!
Parking Around Suburban Train Stations
Counting the suburban train and bus parking lots together, there are 15 projects to add a total of 2250 new parking spaces for a projected cost of 11.8M$. The costs range between 3k$ for the south shore to 20k$ for the proposed enlargement of the parking lot at the Namur metro station.
If we assume that these new spots are occupied by a car of a new user of public transport, it represents an acquisition cost of $ 5200 per new user (equivalent to 32 months of a TRAM6). However, it would be a complete waste of money if the space were to be occupied by an already existing user who now decided to drive to and park at the parking lot instead of taking the bus or being dropped off.
I think this money could be put to better use elsewhere!
SLR on Av. du Parc
Even after the city clearly indicated that they want three lines developed at the same time: Parc, Griffintown, and Côte-des-Neiges, AMT is still only looking at the Parc line.
What about the other 2?
The PTI has several projects to purchase 20 new bi-mode locomotives that will be able to travel in the tunnel of Mont Royal. The projects are
B.4 – replace old diesel locomotives (12 new locomotives),
B.6 – Increase service on deux montagnes line (3 locomotives),
B.46 – Train de l’est (5 locomotives – new service)
The end result of this and the proposal to link the St-Jerome and train de l’Est lines to the line running into the Mont Royal tunnel is that the remaining 11 diesel locomotives will all travel along the Montreal-West Corridor to Lucien-d’Allier. Since there is also a proposal (B.53) to electrify some of their high traffic segments of the network, it seems to me that this corridor would be worthwhile. If there are still diesel trains remaining in the fleet that can only go to Lucien d’Allier, it seems to me that this corridor won’t get the upgrade.
Although the service improvements are great, can’t the AMT get an extra 10 locomotives to have a harmonized fleet and then electrify the network as needed. The relatively recent F-59 locomotives will still fetch a reasonable price with other operators in North America.