Tramway project for Repentigny “This is not in line with our vision”

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The East Montreal Tramway would not receive Repentigny’s support, at least not for the time being. The municipality believes that the current project will lead to the construction of new condo towers on Notre-Dame Street, where there are already several.

“The arrival of the tramway on Notre-Dame will require us to develop TOD areas (high-density areas near public transportation), which will involve the construction of buildings of 10 to 15 floors, a perspective with which the citizens of Repentigny are completely satisfied. Kind of disagree. This could also lead to a significant reduction in traffic flow,” says Nicolas Dufour, mayor of the municipality.

Several condo towers have been built on Notre-Dame Street in recent years. The presence of these houses has also caused considerable concern among the population due to their obstruction of the view of the St. Lawrence River.

Today, the city believes that the tramway could force its administration to increase “density” even more in the area “in accordance with the new requirements of the Metropolitan Land Use and Development Plan (PMAD)”. The latter applies to TOD areas which normally have a high level of density.

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There is no question of touching Notre-Dame to implement a massive means of public transportation. This does not match our vision of our city.

Nicolas Dufour, Mayor of Repentigny

His administration favors building a structure mode around Highway 40, even though the cost is likely to be higher. Otherwise, he fears the tramway will suffer the same fate as Eastern Trains, whose ridership has fallen in recent years due to the pandemic and the construction of the Reso Express Metropolitan (REM).

Car traffic in the Repentigny area has also decreased significantly since the pandemic and the advent of teleworking. According to Transport Ministry data, traffic on the Le Gardeur bridge, which opens onto Notre-Dame Street, has increased from 18,000 to 14,000 vehicles per day.

“Put Trust to the Test”

According to a report leaked in several media outlets including Press, Last week, the route of the Eastern Structuring Project (PSE) would remain the same as the initial scenario, between Marie-Victorine Cégep and Pointe-aux-Stations, in the axis of Lacordaire Boulevard and Sherbrooke Street East. Green metro line. Extensions towards Rivière-des-Prairies and Repentigny are also planned.

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An idea of ​​the route of the future PSE, according to the map unveiled by ARTM last Friday

The Director of the Authority Regional Transport Authority (ARTM), Benoit Gendron, is finding it difficult to explain to Nicolas Dufour after learning “once again” all this information in the newspapers, without consultation, despite “numerous requests for meetings”. Is. From 30th October.

ARTM is laughing at us. (…) This unilateral decision is a rejection of the role of municipal elected officials in decisions that impact our communities.

Nicolas Dufour, Mayor of Repentigny

“For two years, we have been investing too much time and public money in studies that ignore our local reality,” denounced the mayor, who does not hide that his confidence in ARTM is “seriously tested. Has been done.

Nothing “stops”

For Daniel Chartier, vice-president of the Mercier-Est Environmental Collective, the tramway is already a less “brutal” mode than the REM in terms of density. “The advantage of the tramway is that it is easy to add stations as needed, so the pressure is spread a little. Now let’s look at it properly and from all angles. We need a long-term approach,” he explains.

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By email, the authority, for its part, assured on Monday that the option to establish a station for the future tramway on Rue Notre-Dame has not yet been “decided upon”.

“We are shocked by the harshness of the words,” countered spokesman Simon Charbonneau, regretting that the mayor’s departure “came just hours before a work meeting planned for several days with Repentigny.” “It seems too early to us. The location of a station in this sector has not been decided and we had already shared it with the Mayor’s team. ,

He affirms that “the best way to have a constructive discussion around this promising project is to participate in the consultations that we are holding”. “We are listening to all constructive proposals that allow the achievement of the objectives targeted by the mandate given by the Government,” Mr Charbonneau concluded.

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