New life for 56 GO Train coaches – Refurbishment work means jobs for North Bay

GO Train passengers will soon be riding on upgraded coaches. Metrolinx has signed a contract for 56 bi-level coaches to be refurbished at Ontario Northland’s Remanufacturing and Repair Centre in North Bay. The work will bring jobs to Northern Ontario and ensure that GO passengers can ride comfortably in the years to come.

Fifty-six GO Train coaches are being refurbished in North Bay so they can be upgraded and continue to serve GO riders for many years to come.

The Government of Ontario, Metrolinx and Ontario Northland made the announcement today (April 8).

Each of the bi-level coaches will be stripped in a complete overhaul that will include structural work and renewed or upgrading parts, including electrical components. Passengers will see new seating and washroom improvements. HVAC and door systems will also be upgraded. 

“This vehicle refurbishment agreement is an important step in supporting the growth of our future rail capacity,” said Metrolinx President and CEO Phil Verster.

“We’re proud to make this progress, working with Ontario Northland and the communities of Northern Ontario.”

Image shows a GO train.
Some older GO Transit coaches are getting upgraded in North Bay. (Metrolinx photo)

The $109-million contract will create jobs in Northern Ontario as the work will be done at Ontario Northland’s Remanufacturing and Repair Centre in North Bay. It will begin on May 30, 2022 and is expected to be completed by late September of 2025.

“This contract will provide job stability for our employees while contributing to economic growth in Northern Ontario,” said Corina Moore, President and CEO of Ontario Northland.

“Our continued partnership with Metrolinx, specifically for refurbishment projects, confirms our exceptional skillset and reputation for high quality remanufacturing services right here in North Bay”

“We are proud of the impact of this contract to the region as it will create long-term jobs as well as drive business to over 30 local suppliers.”

This agreement is in addition to the existing contract with Ontario Northland to refurbish 15 cab cars, signed in 2019.

In November 2021, the transit agency announced a $171 million investment to refurbish 94 GO coaches at the Thunder Bay Alstom plant. These coaches are not from the same series as the 56 referenced in today’s announcement.

Story by Mike Winterburn, senior writer, Metrolinx News