12 Jun O-Train Confederation Line track installation begins with laying of first rail
Ottawa – Today, Royal Galipeau, MP (Ottawa–Orléans), Bob Chiarelli, MPP (Ottawa West–Nepean) and Mayor Jim Watson installed the first official rail track of the O-Train Confederation Line light rail transit project.
This milestone sets the stage for the City’s Transitway to be converted to light rail, beginning this summer. Construction of the track along the entire line will continue well into 2017.
“The government is pleased to see this project progressing well, making public transit faster, safer and more convenient for commuters in Ottawa,” said MP Galipeau. “Investing in a modern and efficient public transportation system will create thousands of new jobs and improve the National Capital Region’s long-term economic growth and prosperity.”
“A modern transit system is essential to a city’s quality of life and economic well-being. Ontario is pleased to invest up to $600 million towards Ottawa’s Confederation Line, the largest single provincial investment in transit infrastructure in the City of Ottawa’s history,” said MPP Chiarelli. “This investment is in addition to the $347.4 million the province has provided to Ottawa since 2003 through the Gas Tax Program. The province looks forward to future partnerships in Ottawa transit systems.”
“Today’s milestone is another sign of momentum towards completing this world-class project on time and on budget,” said Mayor Watson. “The Confederation Line O-Train will mean shorter commute times, cleaner air, and a stronger economy.”
Spanning 12.5 kilometres between Tunney’s Pasture Station in the west and Blair Station in the east, the majority of the O-Train Confederation Line track will be built in the Transitway’s existing footprint. It will have a mix of at-grade, elevated and tunnel sections, and will replace existing diesel powered buses.
The system has 13 stations, including three new underground stations, and a maintenance and storage facility at Belfast Yard. The dignitaries toured this facility, where the vehicles for the line will be assembled.
The Confederation Line is a $2.1 billion project that is jointly funded by the Government of Canada, the Province of Ontario and the City of Ottawa. The Government of Canada is contributing $600 million through the Building Canada Fund. The City of Ottawa will also allocate up to $161.5 million of its federal Gas Tax Fund transfers to this project. The Government of Ontario is contributing up to $600 million. In addition, the City of Ottawa will allocate $287 million of provincial gas tax transfers to the capital infrastructure. The remaining project budget funds will come from development charge revenues and transit reserves.
The Rideau Transit Group is the private sector partner responsible for this first stage in Ottawa’s future rail network. The 12.5-kilometre electric light rail line will provide rapid transit between Blair Station in the east and Tunney’s Pasture in the west. The route includes 13 stations and a 2.5-kilometre tunnel that will reduce congestion through the downtown core. For more information, visit ottawa.ca.
Please find below a few photos from this historic occasion.