The Plante administration continues to increase the number of lanes reserved for buses and active transportation. Several sections devoted to it will see the light of day in the coming months on heavily trafficked axes and, above all, less well served by the metro, learned La Presse.

“It really is a measure that has concrete impacts on the efficiency and predictability of buses, and that is done almost at zero cost. It makes it possible to increase the performance of public transit in general,” says the president of the Société de transport de Montréal (STM), Éric Alan Caldwell, in an interview.

On Wednesday, the executive committee will approve the implementation of at least four new reserved lanes:

“On Côte-Saint-Luc, it’s a big lane reserved for high throughput and high volume, while on Sherbrooke, we come to untie a congestion node over a short distance. Saint-Laurent, it’s the length and the cumulative effect that will make all the difference,” he says.

The president of the STM makes no secret of it: reserved lanes will multiply even more in the coming years in Montreal. “Right now, an area in our sights is Henri-Bourassa Boulevard,” he recalls.

The project will get done, Caldwell says, but he’s considering “faster” ways to reduce congestion by then. “We wonder how we can really do better without taking 10 years and costing a fortune, as was the case with Pie-IX,” he reasons.

“We really have three strong axes where we want something akin to an SRB: Henri-Bourassa, Côte-des-Neiges and Parc. But for me, what I want is to do it more efficiently and at a lower cost, to get the benefits more quickly, “said the manager.

The person in charge of transport on the executive committee of the Plante administration, Sophie Mauzerolle, applauds these new measures by the STM. “Adding these dedicated lanes will improve the fluidity, reliability and, by extension, the overall performance of the bus network,” she said in a statement. The cabinet of the mayoress of Montreal, Valérie Plante, also confirms that “although other sections will continue to be deployed over the next few years”, but that more “structuring” measures will be prioritized, including the extension of the lines blue and orange of the metro, the REM de l’Est and the addition of buses.

In 2021, in an announcement also about new reserved lanes, Mayor Valérie Plante argued that reserved lanes lead to efficiency gains of 5 to 20%.