The Government of Ontario awarded three contracts to design and manufacture nine new station shelters, enhance rail safety and complete warning system upgrades for Ontario Northland.

The contracts mark a milestone in reinstating train service between Timmins and Toronto, providing a safe and reliable transportation option for northern and central communities and unlocking Ontario’s full economic potential.

“People and businesses in northern and central Ontario deserve the same access to safe and reliable transportation as the rest of the province,” said Vijay Thanigasalam, Associate Minister of Transportation. “Reinstating the Northlander will not only support our northern industries and resource sectors, but it will also pave the way for a more integrated transportation network that connects communities from the north to the south.”

Over the next two years, new station shelters equipped with seating, lighting and heating will be installed in Matheson, Kirkland Lake, Temiskaming Shores, Temagami, South River, Huntsville, Bracebridge, Gravenhurst and Washago.

“This investment marks further progress on the reinstatement of the Northlander train service,” said Chad Evans, CEO for Ontario Northland. “The shelters will be safe, comfortable and accessible, providing a consistent, modern passenger experience for customers boarding and exiting the train all along the route. We are excited to see this work progress during this construction season and next.”

(Government of Ontario)

Enseicom Inc. has been awarded the contract to design and manufacture nine new station shelters.

Remcan Ltd. has been awarded the contract for track improvements to enhance rail safety, decrease maintenance and reduce derailment risks.

X-Rail has been awarded the contract to complete warning system upgrades along the Northlander corridor north of North Bay.

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“Our government has long recognized the importance of having safe, convenient and reliable transportation that extends to northern Ontario. Today’s announcement marks a significant milestone in the long-awaited restoration of the Northlander’s vital passenger rail service. We look forward to the positive impact this will hold for our local communities as well as those experiencing the beauty and opportunities of the north for the first time,” said Vic Fedeli, MPP for Nipissing.

Construction of station platforms, parking areas and pathways will begin this summer, along with track improvements to enhance rail safety, reduce derailment risks and decrease train maintenance. Once reinstated, the Northlander passenger rail service will operate four to seven days a week, based on seasonal travel demands.

“We are pleased to see the Ontario government investing in shelters along the Northlander route, including right here in Bracebridge. These upgraded amenities will contribute to providing safe, accessible transportation options to residents and visitors while helping support the growth and development of our local economy through improved access to tourism and job opportunities,” said Rick Maloney, Mayor of the Town of Bracebridge.

Featured image: Rendering of the shelters being installed at nine future Northlander stops. (Government of Ontario)

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