CANADA: Ottawa’s C$60·3m O-Train capacity expansion project was officially completed on March 2, with the entry into service of six Alstom Coradia Lint 41 diesel multiple-units.

However, the launch was delayed by a points failure, and services were suspended the following day owing to signalling problems.

The line has been rebranded as the Trillium Line, with the O-Train name now being used to refer to both the Trillium Line and the Confederation light rail line which is currently under construction.

The Trillium Line capacity expansion project included upgrading the track, signalling and five stations on the 8 km route. The decision to adopt a centralised control system led a slight cost increase from the original estimate and a delay to the completion date.

Passing loops have been installed at Brookfield and Gladstone to permit the operation of a more frequent service, with 10 to 12 min headways Monday – Saturday and a train every 10 to 15 min on Sundays. Operator OC Transpo plans to increase services to every 8 to 10 min in the future.

The six Coradia Lint 41 DMUs were ordered in September 2011 at cost of C$34m. They have a capacity of 260 passengers and are expected to offer lower emissions, better fuel economy and shorter stopping distances than the three Bombardier Talent DMUs in use since O-Train was launched in 2001.

‘Today is yet another milestone in Ottawa’s transit history,’ said Mayor Jim Watson. ‘The completion of the O-Train Trillium Line expansion project demonstrates our city’s continued commitment to providing safe, reliable and efficient transit service. The new trains will meet the demand of growing ridership to and from the south end of Ottawa now and well into the future.’