Transport Canada announced the launch of the Request for Proposals (RFP) for the High Frequency Rail project. Following the evaluation period, lasting through to summer 2024, the Government of Canada will select the group who will become the private developer partner to work collaboratively with VIA HFR to design and develop the High Frequency Rail project.

“The launch of the Request for Proposals for the High Frequency Rail project marks a significant milestone. In the future, more Canadians will choose to travel by rail, because the HFR will lead to faster train journeys, more frequent departures and greener travel. I look forward to seeing how the teams participating in this process will approach the challenge of connecting communities, honouring Indigenous Reconciliation, and improving travel in the Québec City to Toronto corridor,” Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Transport.

To maximize public benefits and innovation, RFP bidders will have to develop two solutions with respect to speed. One solution must include trains that can reach a maximum speed of 200 kilometres per hour, which is faster than the service offered today. The second solution must include high speed segments for faster travel. This will allow for a rigorous assessment of the costs and benefits of incorporating high speed rail on each segment of the Corridor.

“Over the past few months, our government has been working extensively with world-class experts from the private sector to help deliver this major infrastructure project and ensure that Canadians have access to fast and reliable rail service. The High Frequency Rail project will contribute to the economic development of the regions served, particularly the Quebec region, while promoting labor mobility and green mobility. The launch of the Request for Proposals marks a critical step in the procurement process and brings us closer to the completion of this important project,” said Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Public Services and Procurement.

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Advancing Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples is a priority for the Government of Canada, and early engagement with Indigenous communities is already underway. Indigenous engagement is critical to the success of the project. As part of the RFP process, bidders will be required to detail their plans for Indigenous participation in the High Frequency Rail project and how they would facilitate opportunities for sharing the socio-economic benefits with Indigenous Peoples.

High Frequency Rail is a transformational project that will fundamentally change the way Canadians travel in southern Québec and Ontario, notably for communities who will be newly served by passenger rail service such as Trois-Rivières and Peterborough.

“This transformative project is about connecting people and places in Canada’s most densely populated corridor. Our team is committed to making passenger rail travel more flexible. By moving passenger trains onto their own dedicated tracks, we’ll offer faster, more frequent trains that arrive reliably on time. Our service will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector,” Martin Imbleau, CEO, VIA HFR-VIA TGF Inc.

Featured image: (VIA Rail Canada)

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