The track installation works for the O-Train East Extension in the Canadian capital of Ottawa have commenced.

Several city and federal officials were present at the event.

The commencement of track installation on the O-Train East Extension marks a key milestone for $3.63bn (C$4.66bn) Stage 2 Light Rail Transit (LRT) project.

The O-Train East Extension is one of the three major extensions to Ottawa’s LRT system. It will stretch from Blair Road to Trim Road adding 12.5km of new rail and five new stations to the network.

It is expected to benefit most of the residents in the communities of Orléans, Blackburn Hamlet and Beacon Hill.

The track installation works are expected to complete by the end of this year. It will involve laying around 32,000 concrete ties across the length of the extension.

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Construction of all O-Train East Extension stations is also underway.

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said: “Stage 2 LRT will forever change the way we move around Ottawa by extending the benefits of the O-Train network farther south, east and west. The new O-Train East Extension will be a simple and convenient travel option for residents in Ottawa’s rapidly growing eastern communities.

“It will also provide transit improvements to major centres of employment, shopping and education and improve connectivity to encourage more active transportation.”

The Stage 2 LRT project is jointly funded by the federal government, the Province of Ontario and the City of Ottawa.

Last month, Ontario broken ground for the Ontario Line Exhibition Station began. This marked the commencement of construction for the new subway line aimed to enable rapid transit for the Greater Toronto Area.