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PNR RailWorks Upgrading Metrolinx Network Through Canpa Switch Plant Project


PNR RailWorks, Canada’s leading rail infrastructure solutions provider, is playing a critical role in upgrading a piece of the Metrolinx network in Toronto.

PNR is working on a major renovation project at Metrolinx’s Canpa switch plant, a project which will trim precious minutes off train travel times for the operator, and promises to reduce congestion in one of the busiest sections of the network. According to Metrolinx, the Canpa switch is particularly vital as it keeps GO trains running smoothly on the busiest line in the network. It also helps route trains into the Willowbrook Rail Maintenance Facility, the VIA Maintenance Facility, the Canpa Spur, and more. Work kicked off on the project in August 2020, and is expected to continue until 2022. The work is being completed over a series of nine weekend work-blocks.

“The project is a major step forward for PNR and for Metrolinx. The work on this project will improve the experience for Metrolinx passengers on a critical piece of the network,” said John Brohm, Executive Vice President of PNR RailWorks. “PNR RailWorks has built a long and successful relationship with Metrolinx over the years, and this project adds another successful chapter in that story. I’m proud of the work our team is performing on the Canpa project.”

Under the scope of the project, PNR, as general contractor, is performing a range of services, including track removal and construction, signals work and civil construction. The project marks a big milestone for Canada – the first installation of a #20 concrete tie crossover. Track construction on the project includes the removal of 2.1 kilometers (1.3 miles) of existing wood tie track and the installation of concrete tie track. Additional work includes installation of four concrete tie #20 Crossovers (the first such installation in Canada); three #20 Concrete Tie Crossovers and new #12 Wood Tie Track.

On the signals side, PNR is installing new switch machines; snow clearing devices; gas feeds; 4-span signal bridge; a new Cantilever bridge; three new dwarf signals; and two new bungalows; and will re-commission the new plant. Additionally, PNR is demolishing and removing the old signal tower; performing excavation and civil work for new track; installing high-security fencing and constructing a new power house and power-line feed.