Highway 20 East now has 3 lanes open between Angrignon exit and Turcot Interchange

Click to play video: 'Montreal drivers can breathe sigh of relief' Montreal drivers can breathe sigh of relief
WATCH: The drive on Highway 20 East got a bit easier as of 5 a.m. Monday morning. A stretch of highway that leads to the Turcot Interchange has expanded from two lanes to three. As Global's Tim Sargeant explains, this is the latest development in the project to rebuild the 50-year-old highway – Dec 17, 2018

After years of construction, three lanes on Highway 20 eastbound are now open to traffic for a three-kilometre span between the Angrignon Boulevard exit and the middle of the Turcot Interchange.

The changes, which came into effect on Monday, should make the drive into downtown a lot easier.

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“I think it will encourage more people to come downtown, use Ste-Catherine (Street) for shopping,” Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante told Global News.

A new reserved bus lane will eventually be added in each direction on the highway, which means there will be a total of eight lanes of traffic along that three-kilometre stretch of Highway 20.

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“It will help mobility in this area,” said Martin Girard, a spokesperson for Transports Québec.

The latest configuration is part of the ongoing construction to rebuild the 50-year-old structure that is the interchange.

WATCH: A stretch of Highway 20 leading to the Turcot Interchange has expanded from two lanes to three. It’s the latest development in Transports Quebec’s efforts to rebuild the exchange.

Click to play video: 'A tour down the Turcot Interchange’s new lane' A tour down the Turcot Interchange’s new lane
A tour down the Turcot Interchange’s new lane – Dec 17, 2018

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The new Turcot Interchange is supposed to be finished by the end of 2020.

A total of 300,000 vehicles per day currently use the structure and that number isn’t supposed to change once the new Turcot is built.

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However, traffic is projected to flow smoothly with the reserved bus lanes and the new electric train project, the REM, which is currently being built.

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“Every time there is an opening or construction being done and we can reopen a way or a lane is very important,” Plante said.

Many more announcements of highway sections being opened will likely occur as work on the Turcot gets closer to its end date.

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