Montreal To Get "Above-Ground Metros" By 2020

The return of tramways in Montreal.
Montreal To Get "Above-Ground Metros" By 2020

Photo cred - Journal Metro

If all goes to plan, Montreal will see some new commuter lines added to the public transportation system by 2015, according to the Journal Metro. Robert Poëti, Montreal's Minister of Transport, recently proposed the implementation of an "above-ground metro" to extend the blue line to Pie-IX, as well as a brand-new line that would run from St-Catherine Street all the way up to Laval, in the hopes of easing the lives of commuters.

It was actually former mayor Gérald Tremblay who first suggested a tramway route that would run along Côte-des-Neiges, with priority given to extending the blue line to Pie-IX, but we all know what happened to that guy. It seems the idea is still alive and well, however, but not without its detractors.

While it would apparently cost considerably less than building a regular underground metro and the BRT (bus rapid transit) proposed for Pie-IX, as well as greatly reduce congestion on the orange line, experts are concerned about the infrastructure required for an above-ground metro. Namely, the ugly electrical wires that would be exposed, especially during winter, the issue of building the necessary overhead structures when our bridges are already collapsing, and the removal of subsequent parking spots.

Regardless of the pros and cons of an above-ground metro, the city of Montreal definitely has to figure out how to extend public transportation to include more of the island and off-island routes, but as to which system seems more viable is still up for debate.

What do you think? Would you welcome the return of tramways in Montreal, or should STM just extend the metro lines we already have underground and add new/more bus routes?