June 22, 2024

The Queens County Citizen

Complete Canadian News World

“I dropped. The bus is too long”: An activist turns to the car for public transport

"I dropped. The bus is too long": An activist turns to the car for public transport

The pandemic is a turning point for a Montrealer who has fought for years to improve public transportation in his neighborhood in east Montreal.

• Also Read: See how the pandemic has reduced services at STM

• Also Read: “It lost a lot of people”: Seniors condemn the end of their STM minibuses

“I dropped. The bus was too long,” says Stephanie Gauthier, who estimates that it takes more than an hour to get to her work near the Cremazzi metro by bus and metro.

The Rivière-des-Prairies resident has long believed that the landlocked public transit offering in his area between the 25 and 40 freeways could improve.

In recent years, she has met with elected officials to find solutions. In 2019, she also presented a petition signed by over 1,000 people to the National Assembly of Quebec to improve public transportation in the Rivière-des-Prairies. In vain.

Easy by car

“It’s longer than ever. I took it this week, it took me an hour and a half,” summed up Ms. Gauthier, who bought the car two years ago at the height of the pandemic.

“It took me twenty minutes to get to work instead of an hour and fifteen minutes,” she explains. But, even back to normal, in traffic, driving is faster than in a bus.

“I love driving. I have always believed in doing our part for the environment, but when there are no options, you end up leaving,” she says.

She was waiting for something to leave her car: rapid transit to the metro, an express bus to the Henri-Bourassa metro, the REM station, anything that would take less than an hour.

No options

Instead, the opposite is happening.

Due to declining ridership and financial problems, the Société de Transport de Montréal cut hundreds of bus lines, including “ten-minute maximum” lines (see other text).

“It’s hard to go back, and I know I’m not the only one. It’s hard for me to see how it’s going to improve when we don’t announce new services, but with the cuts, the end of the 10-minute peak buses, I can clearly see it’s not going any faster,” lamented Ms Gauthier. .

The Montrealer clings to one last hope: REM. But with numerous delays and no scheduled station in her vicinity, she wasn’t going back.

Do you have any information to share with us about this article?

Got a scoop that our readers might be interested in?

Write us or call us directly 1 800-63SCOOP.

About The Author