Transportation Round Table Meeting Wrap Up

Thanks to the Honorable Marc Garneau (federal transport minister), Marvin Rotrand (vice-chair of the STM), Peter McQueen (representative for NDG), Marc-André Gadoury (responsible for active transportation for the Ville de Montreal) and Catherine Blanchette-Dallaire  (founder of OnRoule) for participating in our round table on transportation event. A special thank you to Professor Ahmed El Geneidy and his students from the Urban Planning Department of McGill University for moderating and gathering audience questions.
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The audience submitted many more questions than there was time to answer. Here is a full list, as compiled by Professor El Geneidy’s students, grouped by topic:

Integration

  • When will Montreal get an integrated traffic system?

Finance

  • If projects such as the proposed train system on the West Island or the Champlain Bridge as a toll bridge will be profitable, why not a crowd funding model to finance then?

High-speed rail

  • What is the government’s plan regarding high-speed rail across Canada now that we have a massive infrastructure program? China already has 19000 km of dedicated high-speed rail.
  • As federal minister of transportation, will you commit to introducing speed limits on trains passing through lower Westmount? The goal is to eliminate the terrible vibration badly affecting homes as the trains pass by. Vibrations seem like a small earthquake.

Oceans

  • Will the recent efforts to keep our ocean clean not be tempered by supertankers crossing to get our tar sand bitumen?

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Vendôme

  • Why is Vendome access taking 4 years?
  • Can we have one of the bus route stopping at Vendome (77) rerouted to the front of the MUHC until the handicapped tunnel is built?
  • Bike safety: the bike path along de Maisonneuve is dangerous particularly at the intersections where cyclists cross from north to south side. Can we develop a safe path for the area?
  • The Vendome station offers a unique opportunity to reach a long-term goal of integrated (bus, metro, train) modes of transportation. Why is the City not taking a long-term approach to how to develop the area around this gem?

Technology

  • Drones; what regulations for urban areas?
  • It may be good to introduce high-tech for accessing public transportation properly, but not everyone can afford this. Perhaps one should work more on the inequality question?

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Safety

  • How can we fund programs to mitigate and decrease heavy truck traffic on our dense urban streets to make our city safer and more liveable?
  • How can we plan development that builds on the Vendome intermodal hub rather than on more car and truck transport? Especially since the MUHC is generating more than 2.5 vehicle-trips per year and has made the Ste-Catherine/De Maisonneuve/Décarie area a massive bottleneck?
  • To say that pipelines are safer than rail to transport oil may be correct but what about the option of zero-emissions?
  • Seen from space, Montreal with a quarter of the population of NYC is brighter. Why can’t we change this fast to deal with light pollution for which white LEDs are certainly not the answer?

Cycling

  • When will cyclists have unlimited subway access?
  • How can we get a cycling path on Mercier bridge?
  • A number of stop signs on De Maisonneuve do not meet provincial regulation. This encourages cyclists and motorists to break the law, which affects safety. Will this be fixed?
  • What is the part of cycling education in the Montreal cycling plan?

Pedestrian

  • The sidewalk on the south side of De Maisonneuve from Décarie boulevard has a steep slope. In Winter it can be icy and not well salted. Could a modest railing be installed so that pedestrians can walk safely from Vendome until they reach the Décarie underpass at least until the tunnel at Vendome is built?

Metro

  • How are you going to deal with the “at capacity” level of use of the orange line?

Trains

  • Monorails vs trains (safety)

Governance

  • How are the 3 levels of government coordinating their plans ideas and budgets?
  • Healthy sustainable cities require cooperation. How can we promote conversations between transport people and other stakeholders like the public health agency of Canada?

Others:

  • If we want more people to use public transportation, why not put our money where our mouth is and make it free for all?
  • Montreal is an island. Transform and innovate the waterway into a high-speed intermodal transport hub?
  • Is there any thought going into using a true cost for transportation choices?

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