Tramway / Metro or REM wanted for LaSalle

LaSalle Tramway

The Borough of LaSalle has filed a submission within the consultations of the Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain (ARTM) on its draft strategic plan for the development of public transit in Greater Montréal. At a time when mobility issues on its territory have an impact on its 82,000 residents, LaSalle tramway – Metro or REM wanted for residents and businesses. its 30,000 workers and the development potential of its industrial and commercial sectors, the Borough is asking the authorities to correct public transit inequities that have persisted for years. This submission will be presented to the ARTM by Borough Mayor Manon Barbe during a webcast hearing session on Wednesday, January 20, 2021 at 7 p.m.

LaSalle REM
LaSalle tramway – Metro or REM wanted

It is clear that the current public transit offer in LaSalle is insufficient and inadequate. For example, the bus lines that run through the Borough make trips that are on average 1.4 times more winding than those on the island of Montréal as a whole, thereby increasing transit users’ travel time. This partly explains why the modal share of public transit is lower in LaSalle (29%) than the Montréal average (34%), despite the proximity of the central neighbourhoods and downtown. 

Arrondissement de LaSalle (Ville de Montréal) logo (CNW Group/Arrondissement de LaSalle)

Moreover, given the growth in LaSalle’s population, mobility issues are likely to worsen if the authorities continue to ignore the glaring need for transportation on LaSalle territory. At the present time, the growth of LaSalle’s residential, commercial and industrial sectors is not taken into account in planning the development of structuring public transit in Greater Montréal. In fact, no new stations are being planned for LaSalle, while structuring public transit service is improving throughout the Montréal region. Once the extensions announced or under study are completed, LaSalle, along with Île-Bizard-Sainte-Geneviève, will become the only borough in Montréal without a metro, REM or tramway station on its territory. 

Consequently, the Borough of LaSalle’s main recommendations to the ARTM are as follows: 

  1. Quickly begin studies aimed at extending the metro’s Green Line or implementing another heavy, structuring means of public transit in LaSalle.
  2. Carry out major improvements to the bus system in LaSalle, both for peak-period routes on major arteries as well as for local service routes.
  3. Set up a participatory process between the Borough and the responsible organizations in order to ensure better coordination between land use planning and public transit services, especially in areas with a high potential for development.

In addition to contributing toward reducing solo car use, which is the means of transportation most used by LaSalle residents to get around, the implementation of a heavy, structuring means of public transit in LaSalle would represent a significant lever of economic development for its companies and merchants. The Borough of LaSalle is therefore committed to working in collaboration with the Government of Québec, Ville de Montréal and the responsible organizations to find concrete, realistic solutions that will effectively meet mobility needs on its territory. 

“While none of the future regional major public transit projects, in their current version, will contribute toward improving the situation on our territory, it is worrisome and even frustrating to note that public transit travel times will improve in the majority of the boroughs and neighbouring cities, but in LaSalle, it will be the status quo, despite our enormous needs! Our residents, merchants and companies have proven to be very resilient to date, by adapting their means of transportation. It’s time for the authorities to listen to them and propose concrete solutions that will efficiently and effectively meet their mobility needs,” said Manon Barbe, Mayor of the Borough of LaSalle.

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