Project Director, High Frequency Rail (HFR)

Project Director, High Frequency Rail (HFR)

Contract duration: 2 years
Location: Montreal

Position Overview

VIA Rail Canada Inc. (“VIA Rail”) and the Canada Infrastructure Bank (“CIB”) are jointly developing a High-Frequency Rail Project (“HFR Project”) in the Toronto – Ottawa – Montreal – Quebec City corridor and are establishing a Joint Project Office (“JPO”) based in Montreal, Canada. The JPO will conduct the de-risking and planning; due diligence and pre-procurement activities for the HFR Project; explore and analyze operating models and develop evidence-based options of procurement and financing models for the HFR Project (“JPO Activities”).

The JPO Activities will include commercial & financial (ridership studies, financial model development, procurement model evaluation), technical (environmental and site investigations, property acquisition work, design and engineering), indigenous people’s consultation and community engagement and legal and pre-procurement activities. At the end of the term, the JPO should be ready to release a Request for Qualification for the HFR Project.

The Project Director will be responsible for delivering the JPO Activities within the established timeline and budget. The Project Director will jointly report to the CEOs of VIA and the CIB (“Joint Leaders”).

The Project Director’s role is on a contract basis for an initial duration of 18 months (maximum 2 years) but may continue post completion of the JPO Activities to lead the HFR Project procurement and implementation. The position will be based in Montreal, Canada with some travel within the Quebec to Toronto corridor.

Key Responsibilities/Accountabilities:

The main responsibilities of the Project Director include:

  • Establish a JPO team including work stream heads, project team members and consultants.
  • Develop a detailed project management plan for the execution of the JPO Activities, including detailed budget, timeline and deliverables and monitor compliance against the project management plan.
  • Deliver the JPO Activities within the timeline and budget and manage the performance and deliverables of all contractors and consultants to ensure timely and effective performance of the JPO Activities.
  • Provide strategic and tactical expertise, develop strong governance, reporting, project management, and communication structures to ensure reliable financial and quality controls.
  • Provide regular reports on the progress of the JPO Activities against the JPO timeline for each major workstream, including tracking JPO expenses against the budget and reporting on the status of deliverables against deadlines.
  • Manage the JPO budget to prevent cost overruns and escalate these to the Joint Leaders in a timely manner and propose solutions to mitigate the extent and effects of cost overruns.
  • Liaise with government agencies, regulators and other stakeholders as required
  • Maintain records of the evidence-based decisions made as part of the execution of the JPO Activities.
  • Identify, manage and mitigate risks that arise when undertaking the JPO Activities
  • Support the winding down of the JPO upon termination and/or transitioning to a project sponsor and/or procurement authority, as applicable.


  • Extensive experience in the planning and delivery of complex large-scale infrastructure projects, including in management roles, and with transit and rail exposure
  • Experience in the design and construction of large (>$3 billion) infrastructure projects (asset)
  • Expertise in rail and passenger rail operations and revenue management (asset)
  • Extensive experience with Public-Private Partnership (P3) delivery models and project financing structures
  • Strong commercial, financial and contractual acumen and demonstrable track record of negotiating multi-party agreements on complex infrastructure projects
  • Demonstrated experience in leadership roles, strong communication and team management skills and experience in communicating at all levels of the organization as well as with multiple stakeholders and the public
  • Be comfortable and confident taking on a highly visible role and providing leadership, professional advice and direction in a scrutinized environment
  • Experience in the Canadian infrastructure environment including, codes, regulations and construction and operating requirements (asset)
  • Bilingual English/French (asset)

To apply for this position, please email your resume to with the Subject Line: Project Director no later than July 29, 2019.

We thank you for your interest. Only those selected for further screening or an interview will be contacted.

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Project Director Job