The push to vastly improve mass transit in Montreal is back on.
The Saint-Laurent borough mayor argues now — more than ever — it makes sense to extend the orange metro line at Côte-Vertu to the Bois-Franc train station.
”By doing that, they would be able to at least provide for that connectivity where the orange line would meet Bois-Franc and provide for inter-modal connections,” Alan DeSousa told Global News.
DeSousa argues the effort to create a bi-modal station is due to the development of the future electric train network (REM) for greater Montreal.
The electric train project requires the temporary closing of the Mount-Royal tunnel.
He says opening a line between Bois-Franc and Côte-Vertu first will allow users to get from Saint-Laurent to downtown quickly.
”We’re going to have to make sure it’s done with the best of planning to make it easier for commuters to make the switch from the train to the metro and vice versa,” he said.
The line between Côte-Vertu metro stop and the Bois-Franc train station is three kilometres but a metro tunnel was built years ago covering half the distance.
Only 1.2 kilometres remain, and work has begun to build a new garage to store the Azur metro trains at the end of that tunnel.
DeSousa claims it’s an easy push to extend the tunnel the remaining distance.
”That’s why an expansion of the garage and the connection of the orange line just makes sense,” he said.
There are several bi-modal stations on Montreal’s mass transit network — Vendome is one of the busiest. Transit users who use the station say they think it would also work at Bois-Franc.
”As someone who takes the train to the metro to get to work and who is juggling a lot of things, it makes all the difference in my day and my life,” Anuska Martins, a public transit user told Global News.
DeSousa is hoping to convince the transport minister that the extension of the Côte-Vertu metro stop to the Bois-Franc train station should happen within the next several years.