The STM's latest initiative to add "de/du" to 20 metro stations has sparked a lot of debate, many wondering why the STM would spend a bunch of money on a project that changes nothing in terms of service and functionality. While the STM has stated the name changes will cost little to no money, the focus on name-additions does highlight other aspects of the metro system that actually do need some fixing, namely the elevator situation.
One of our FB followers (Nicolas Messier) pointed out the shocking lack of elevators installed in Montreal's metro system, which are crucial for those with mobile disabilities and posted a recreated map of the metro system that only includes stations with elevator access for those in wheelchairs or with limited mobility. The image, likely taken from Accessibilize Montreal, is more than a little shocking.
Right now, only 7 metro stations are equipped with functional elevators, all of them being on the Orange Line. The recreated map doesn't include Bonaventure station (which has limited elevator accessibility anyway, so it doesn't count, even according to the STM) but it does provide a pretty stark visual representation of how ill-equipped the city's metro system is for those in wheelchairs.
I guess anyone in a wheelchair is kind of in a back spot on the regular if they want to hop on the green or blue line. A demonstration in protest of the lack of accessibility in Montreal's metro system occurred last week, put on by Accessibilize Montreal, of which only 50 people attended. If you want to see improvements to the metro system that aren't purely cosmetic, head to Accesibilize Montreal's FB page and learn how to get involved.
For more on all things Montreal, follow Michael on Twitter @MDAlimonte