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Video Shows What Montreal's REM de l'Est Light-Rail Project Would Look Like Downtown

Elevated tracks, wider sidewalks, and bold station design by the Chinatown gate.

Senior Editor
Renderings showing the passage of the proposed REM de l'Est elevated light-rail in downtown Montreal.

Renderings showing the passage of the proposed REM de l'Est elevated light-rail in downtown Montreal.

Planners behind Montreal's proposed REM de l'Est have released an animation showing what the elevated light-rail project could look like along boulevard René-Lévesque downtown.

Critics of the project have bemoaned the network's proposed path through Ville-Marie, arguing it would be a disruptive presence, particularly in Chinatown.

In March, CDPQ Infra, a wing of the publicly owned investment group behind the REM, released new renderings it hoped would address concerns of an eyesore.

The new plans called for sculptural buttresses, bold station design, public gathering spaces, and new cycling and pedestrian connections, including a multi-kilometre path on René-Lévesque — an otherwise wide and imposing concrete thoroughfare that rips through the downtown area.

The latest REM de l'Est animation shows what some of those details would actually look like.

The animation specifically highlights a new lookout point atop the spot where the REM de l'Est would plunge underground, as well as the proposed station and public square next to the Chinatown gate.

The REM de l'Est as proposed would directly connect Montréal-Nord and the East End of Montreal Island to the downtown via two branches that converge in Mercier—Hochelaga Maisonneuve.

Its progress through the planning stages is currently stalled pending additional input from community members.

The first REM project (shall we call it the REM de l'Ouest?) is already under construction. The first light-rail trains are set to carry passengers between Brossard and the Gare Centrale in fall 2022 and to Montreal-Trudeau Airport in 2024.

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