Minister Fletcher and VIA Rail announce improvements to its locomotives, frequencies and infrastructure

Ottawa, 2012-12-05 — / — Today, the Honourable Steven Fletcher, Minister of State (Transport) and VIA Rail announced the completion of a number of important projects including additional frequencies and the introduction of a new service between Ottawa and Quebec City.

These initiatives will lead to safer, faster, and more efficient service in the Quebec-Windsor corridor. The activities are part of VIA Rail’s modernization plan. To make travel easier for Canadians, new scheduling options in the Ottawa-Toronto-Quebec City line were added, the F40 were renovated, and additional safety features were implemented at railway crossings in the Quebec-Windsor Corridor. The upgrades to F40 locomotives will improve fuel efficiency and environmental sustainability. These initiatives help VIA Rail to bring Canadians together, and promote economic growth and prosperity in Canada.

According to Minister of State Fletcher: “Our government is committed to creating a safe, efficient and reliable passenger rail service for Canadians. That’s why we are supporting VIA Rail through our Economic Action Plan, and why we have invested nearly $1 billion in passenger rail since 2007. We believe that improvements to VIA Rail will help to create jobs and stimulate economic growth across the country.”

“This investment in VIA Rail is made possible through the support of the Government of Canada, who like us, wants to provide transportation solutions that are accessible to Canadians and improve their quality of life by offering more train frequencies to millions of passengers. The improvements made to our schedules and rolling stock will allow us to meet our targets in terms of the environment, customer experience and operational performance,” said Marc Laliberté, President and Chief Executive Officer of VIA Rail. “The Corporation is in a better position to face the future and, thanks to the vision and innovation of our employees and partners; it addresses the needs of a larger number of people in terms of mobility.”

The improvements were made possible by the federal government’s Capital Investment Program for VIA Rail. The Government of Canada has invested almost $1 billion in VIA Rail since 2007 to improve its stations, infrastructure, trains and technology. These investments will directly benefit Canadians and the country’s economy, by promoting job creation and prosperity across the country.

About VIA Rail Canada
As Canada’s national passenger rail service, VIA Rail Canada ( has a mandate to provide Canadian travellers with safe, efficient, and cost-effective passenger transportation services in the country’s two official languages. VIA operates intercity, regional and transcontinental train services linking 450 communities through its 12,500-kilometre network. Winner of the 2011 RAC Safety Award, VIA Rail safely transports more than four million passengers annually. In 2007, the Government of Canada invested almost a billion dollars in VIA Rail. Follow our transformation on

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Backgrounders available on VIA Rail’s website
1. Improvements announced
2. New scheduling options on the Ottawa-Toronto-Quebec City segment
3. F40 locomotive fleet
4. Closure of railway crossings in the Quebec-Windsor Corridor