Love it or hate it, Montreal’s proposed electric light rail system has people talking.
The driverless commuter train system would link downtown to the suburbs and the airport. But some environmentalists don’t think it’s all that it’s been talked up to be.
“Just because it’s an electric train doesn’t make it automatically environmental,” said deputy leader of the Green Party Daniel Green.
It’s a message Green wanted to share during a talk at Concordia University.
The talk was organized by Citizens in Action, a non-profit organization dedicated to informing people and government lobbying.
“It doesn’t seem like something that anybody should accept at face value,” Baie-D’Urfé resident David Kingsland told Global News.
Some people at the talk said they don’t think there is enough information available on the project.
“This is the first time I hear about the sky train in Montreal,” John Desjardins said.
Conference organizers think the project is moving too fast and it is flawed.
“It’s not easy to change the government’s mind but the more people who learn about it, the more they will be able to act on it,” founder of Citizens in Action Montreal Nadia Alexan explained.
“A project that eats away green spaces, a project that mobilizes toxic chemicals and a project that does not really reduce urban sprawl but increases it,” Green added.
Green said he doesn’t oppose the electric light rail. But he thinks the plan needs to be tweaked.
“But to do that the government has to slow down, back away and listen to the people that want to make this project better,” Green added.
Although critics have been divided on whether the project is good for the environment, it does have some pretty big supporters.
Equiterre and The David Suzuki Foundation say the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks.
The system is slated to be up and running by 2020.