Our New Fleet – Barrier-Free and Fully Accessible
At VIA Rail, accessibility is one of our main priorities, and that is no exception when it comes to our new fleet of trains. Besides its sleek design and advanced diesel engines, our new fleet—set to start hitting the rails, one trainset at a time, in late 2022—will be one of the most accessible modes of transport in all of Canada.
Our ambition to create a state-of-the-art barrier-free train was no overnight endeavor. Since the very beginning of our new fleet project, launched in late 2018, we’ve been hard at work, collaborating with accessibility stakeholders across Canada. From advocacy groups representing people with disabilities and physical limitations, to government agencies whose key objective is universal accessibility, we wanted to make sure that we took all perspectives into account when designing our new trains.
We set about achieving that by holding not one, not two, but three in-person sessions. During the final workshop, people with disabilities and their advocacy groups were invited to test life-sized mockups of our new fleet.
Check out the video below about these sessions:
With 1 in 10 Canadians affected by a mobility disability, being an accessible mode of transport is no longer optional—it is a necessity. Creating a barrier-free Canada means giving people with limited mobility the chance to travel comfortably, freely and without restrictions. Some of those features will include: fully accessible washrooms, braille signage on important features such as seat numbers and call-for-aid buttons, wheelchair lifts in both economy and business class, and more.
Travel in the Quebec City – Windsor corridor will never be the same, and we’re proud to help lead the way. Stay tuned for more updates!
In 2020, VIA Rail launched its first and very own Universal Accessibility Policy. To learn more about accessibility at VIA Rail, visit our Accessibility page.