This weekend is shaping up to be a Montreal traffic nightmare with tons of road closures affecting key stretches of highway.
According to Mobilité Montreal, "major obstacles will be put in place during the weekend, particularly on Autoroute 25 north and south in the Louis-Hippolyte-La-Fontaine Tunnel, on Autoroute 40 westbound between the Laurentides and Décarie Interchanges and on route 136 east between the Turcot Interchange and the Ville-Marie Tunnel."
Mobilité Montréal - Planifier ses déplacements durant la fin de semaine du 1er au 4 octobre - entraves majeures sur… https://t.co/HcwEvP8u6b
Work will take place at various times between Friday night and Monday morning. Some areas will be completely closed to traffic and will be detoured.
The following areas are to be avoided and you should definitely plan ahead if you're taking a drive:
Autoroute 25 north will be closed to traffic "between Exit 90 [...] on A-20 west and the rue Notre-Dame Street E. / Curatteau entrance, including the Louis-Hippolyte-La-Fontaine Tunnel" from 12:30 a.m. Saturday to 5:00 a.m. Monday.
Autoroute 40 west will be closed between the Décarie and Laurentides Interchanges from 10:00 p.m. Friday to 5:00 a.m. Monday.
The Autoroute 40 eastbound service road between the rue Champ-d'Eau and boulevard des Galeries-d'Anjou overpasses will be closed from 9:30 p.m. Friday to 5:00 a.m. Monday.
The ramp from Autoroute 20 east to Route 136 east in the Turcot Interchange will be closed from 11:59 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday.
Route 136 east will be completely closed between exit 2 and the entrances to rues de la Cathédrale and Notre-Dame.
The ramp from Autoroute 20 west to Route 138 west in the Saint-Pierre Interchange will be closed from 11:59 p.m. Friday to 5:00 a.m. Monday.
The westbound direction on the Île-aux-Tourtes from Senneville to Vaudreuil-Dorion will be closed from 10:00 p.m. Friday to 7:30 a.m. and from 10:00 p.m. Saturday to 8:30 a.m. Sunday.
Valérie Plante has big plans for downtown Montreal if she's reelected mayor and has outlined her party's ideas for the city's economic and social recovery after the pandemic.
From free parking to planting hundreds of thousands of trees, here's what her vision for the future of downtown Montreal looks like.
Her plan, self-described as "ambitious," aims to boost what she already says has been the "best economic recovery" in Canada post-pandemic.
But while the economic aspect of downtown is looking positive, "there is still work to be done to enhance our downtown area and make it more attractive to workers, businesses, tourists, and Montrealers from all over the island," according to her party.
If reelected mayor, Plante promises to:
"support the Palais des Congrès expansion project, and consequently the covering of a part of the Ville-Marie highway;"
"offer free parking downtown on evenings and weekends in December to support our merchants during the holiday season;"
"[accelerate] construction sites and [limit] potential nuisances;"
"support the redevelopment of large offices into adequate spaces to accommodate [small and medium enterprises] and start-ups;"
make "a $1 billion investment by 2030 to develop beautiful, large public plazas in downtown, redevelop key commercial arteries and create vibrant living environments;"
"green" downtown by planting 500,000 trees in four years;
and "facilitate the transformation of vacant office space into housing."
The Montreal municipal election is on November 6 and 7.*
Specifically, Coderre and his party, Ensemble Montréal, say their administration would study the possibility of turning the surface above a stretch of sunken highway between chemins Queen Mary and Côte-Sainte-Catherine into a "new green urban park" with "outdoor sports facilities, family facilities and a relaxation area with a fountain."
🏗️ Le recouvrement de Ville-Marie mettra la table pour l’agrandissement du Palais des Congrès, qui permettra à Mont… https://t.co/E5o0nS5jba
"It's been 50 years since we've been talking about covering the Décarie Expressway and no one has yet taken the time to commission a detailed and ingenious feasibility study with a budget and a timetable for the project to become a reality," Ensemble Montréal candidate for CDN-NDG borough mayor, Lionel Perez, said in a statement.
The party says it would reduce the roads on either side of the highway to two lanes each.
Coderre also has a plan to cover part of the Ville-Marie Expressway downtown through the expansion of the Palais des congrès and the creation of a public square between rue Sanguinet and boulevard Saint-Laurent.
Ensemble Montréal says covering the Décarie would cost $700 million and covering the Ville-Marie Expressway would cost $400 million.
The City of Montreal has announced that it will be moving forward with investments on seven projects that were selected by Montrealers.
The investment will come from the city's first-ever participatory budget, which allowed citizens to choose their favourite projects.
Over a two-year period, $10 million will go to seven projects that got the most overall votes from the population. Six projects will be spread out over 14 boroughs and one project will encompass the entire territory of Montreal.
"What emerges from the selected projects is the importance that people place on improving their living environment, protecting nature in the city and reclaiming public spaces for the benefit of the entire population," Mayor Valérie Plante said in a statement.
The following projects were selected for investment:
A budget of $2.7 million will be used for building more than 125 water fountains that will allow for refilling reusable water bottles in Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, Île-Bizard–Sainte-Geneviève, Mercier–Hochelaga–Maisonneuve, Outremont, Saint-Léonard and Ville-Marie.
John Soares, an Old Montreal resident, took a video of the chaos on Friday at around 11:30 a.m.
The video shows the streets jam-packed and traffic gridlocked on all four sides of the intersection at rue Saint-Paul O. & rue Saint-François-Xavier, as stagnant vehicles honk continuously.
Soares posted the video to Facebook with the caption, "Going to be a fun weekend."
"If that's what it was like in the middle of the day, imagine what it's going to be like at 6 p.m. when people are trying to get home," Soares told MTL Blog.
The World Triathlon Championship is set to take place in the Old Port of Montreal from August 13 to 15.
Much of rue de la Commune Ouest will be entirely closed to cars, as will parts of rue McGill, rue Saint-Maurice, rue Saint-Henri, and rue Saint-Paul, during different periods of the weekend.
Annette Woloshen, who lives on rue Saint-Paul, said she saw cars with U.S. license plates driving in the area. Canada's land border reopened to vaccinated Americans on August 9.
"It's [...] absolute madness! I saw several cars with American plates and thought [...] the borders opened, they all rushed to see la Belle Province and now are sitting in that jam, cursing not knowing what the heck is going on in this city," Woloshen wrote on Facebook.
"I guess grocery shopping isn't happening either. Uber Eats it is."