Excellent transit, just around the corner

By Sean Delaney

Finch West LRT Vehicle Testing: Key Steps and Progress

Significant strides are being made on the Finch West LRT project in northwest Toronto. The

project is currently in the crucial testing and commissioning phase, a meticulous process that

ensures all systems are rigorously tested and any potential issues are promptly addressed. This

unwavering commitment to safety is a testament to our dedication to providing a secure and

reliable service to the public.

The Finch West LRT is not just a new rapid transit line along Finch Avenue West, it’s a game-

changer for our community. It will feature a fleet of 18 light rail vehicles (LRVs) powered by

overhead wires, making them emission-free. Each LRV can carry up to 300 passengers, which

is three times the capacity of a bus, ensuring a more efficient and comfortable commute for all.

The testing and commissioning process for the Finch West LRT involves several key steps:

Validation: The initial tests focus on the LRVs’ communication systems and brakes. This phase

includes low-speed tests (2–5 km/h) conducted in the maintenance and storage yard (MSF).

Faster Pace: After passing the initial tests, higher speed tests are conducted along the route to

confirm braking and acceleration capabilities.

Burn-in Phase: During this phase, LRVs operate on Finch Avenue West at regular speeds,

making stops and ensuring doors function correctly. Each vehicle must complete 600 km of

testing, which can take three weeks or more per vehicle. Successful completion leads to the

issuing of a Final Acceptance Certificate (FAC).

System Integration: Once the FAC is achieved, the LRVs are handed over to the contractor for

full mainline testing and integration with signaling, train control, and communication systems.

They will be monitored from the operations centre in the MSF.

Recent updates from Metrolinx show that testing is progressing well. The LRVs have been

running on a 1.8 km test track between York Gate Boulevard and Sentinel Road. The testing

phases include checking various systems such as doors, overhead electrical connectivity, and

power transfers. Crews have also installed key infrastructure elements like the overhead

catenary system and ensured all safety measures


As the project moves forward, Metrolinx continues to prioritize safety above all else. They

remind the public not to enter the tracks or approach the LRVs during testing. The LRVs will be

a regular sight on Finch Avenue West as testing continues daily. This meticulous process,

coupled with our unwavering commitment to safety, ensures that when the Finch West LRT

opens, it will provide all passengers with a reliable and efficient service, without compromising

on their safety.

For the latest and most comprehensive updates on the Finch West LRT project, we encourage

you to visit the dedicated page on the Metrolinx website.

There, you’ll find detailed information on the project’s progress, key milestones, and future