May 24, 2022

The Queens County Citizen

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Montreal Metro: The Blue Line extension will take effect in 2029

Montreal Metro: The Blue Line extension will take effect in 2029

After many false startups, the project to expand the blue line will cost nearly $ 6 billion and will finally come to light by 2029, the Quebec government and the city of Montreal promise.

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According to current estimates, excavation work will begin by 2023.

“I can assure you that this time is right,” said Chantal Rowley, the minister in charge of the Montreal area. “The Blue Line Extension Project combines decades of solemn advertising […] They are broken promises, ”she agreed.

She points out, at this point, that “there is money” and that the government will authorize the Society de Transport de Montreal (STM) to call for eligibility for work on the tunnel boring machine.

M.Me Minister of the Government of Canada and Quebec Lieutenant Pablo Rodriguez, as well as Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante Rowley with STM Board of Directors Chairman Eric Alan Caldwell.

The project, reviewed by STM, spans six kilometers with five stations and is estimated to cost $ 5.8 billion. Various optimizations would save $ 1.1 billion, but by April 2021, costs were estimated at $ 6.9 billion.

However, due to inflation and interest rates, the bill could rise to $ 6.4 billion.

The government will pay $ 577 million to start planning the project. Other envelopes may follow.

In this new version provided, the terminus station will be under Highway 25. The station at Pi-IX Boulevard Junction has also been rebuilt along with other changes. The tunnel is excavated by a tunnel boring machine, which allows the occupants of the crossing sectors to minimize surface troubles and move forward twice as fast.

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STM estimates that a maximum of 25,600 customers will use the extended section at each rush hour, which will remove 5,300 cars from the road.

In terms of time, it will be possible to connect Jean-Talon station to the terminus in Anjou in about fifteen minutes, but the project will now take about forty on the bus.

For his part, the mayor of Montreal, Valerie Plante, recalled that no station had been opened since 1988.

“As we look around the world, we see other major cities constantly improving their public transportation, but we are not. That means we are now in catch-up mode,” she recalled, hoping the ad would be the first step. No, “the mayor added.

Optimizations

Following public consultation, STM moved to the planned location of the terminus station, which is now below Highway 25, rather than at the Galleries d’Anjou. Adicules will be set up on either side of the highway, on one side of the municipal space on the east, and near the shopping center on the other. The new configuration creates a link between the two poles of the borough.

“We will fully open the district so that citizens can finally have access to everything that happens on the other side of the road. All Montreallers have very easy access to the east end of Montreal,” Ms.Me Roller.

The initial incentive parking was also withdrawn after several requests to do so. The bus terminal is also eligible for new development.

From April 2021, STM became the owner of the Le Boulevard Shopping Center on the corner of Pee-IX, where the future station will also be located.

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In the new project configuration, the bus terminal size will be changed. It is also possible to limit the space required on a contract site for the use of the Francon Quarry, which will allow the shopping center to continue its operations during working hours.

Nearly twenty sites are subject to extortion notices. Of this number, 30% is completed and 50% is in progress, the rest being in reserve.

Start slowly

The project to expand the Blue Line to Anjou was announced in 2018 by the government of Philippe Coulard. The following year, the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, pledged $ 1.3 billion to allow the project to proceed.

Since then, STM has made several updates to the project, announcing that it is awarding two contracts for the architectural design of the stations in 2019 and 2020, and is conducting a number of public consultations.

In 2021, STM began preparatory work at the corner of Rue Jean-Talon and Boulevard Lacordier to replace the underground cables and aqueducts in the excavation area of ​​the Future Station. Other work is underway to build a pedestrian tunnel connecting the future PI-IX station and the SRB project.

Despite these advances, the project has been slow to materialize, especially due to controversial exploitation processes by some owners and its costs have skyrocketed.

The government has come up with the idea of ​​cutting off the Future Station at Via Junction to reduce project costs.

Other major public transport projects could soon be lit in the eastern end of Montreal. The Rapid Bus Service (SRB) on Boulevard Pi-IX should begin the trial period in the summer, with the official launch in the autumn.

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The Eastern Metropolitan Express Network (REM), for its part, has a path perpendicular to the blue line and crosses it at the Jean-Talon Street and Lacordier Boulevard axis. On Thursday, CDPQ Infra, which manages the project, announced that it was suspending it.

It has been mentioned many times in the past by various governments that the Blue Line should be extended to Anju, but it has not materialized.

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