Mi­nis­ter of Trans­port ap­proves $22 mil­lion Train de l'Ouest stu­dy

L'Etoile - - IN OTHER WORDS -

Saying it will re­main a "wat­ch­ful part­ner," Train de l'Ouest foun­ders ex­pres­sed cau­tious op­ti­mism Mon­day when Que­bec'sMi­nis­ter of Trans­port an­noun­ced a $22 mil­lion preliminary en­gi­nee­ring stu­dy for a de­di­ca­ted com­mu­ter train line from Montréal to Sainte-Anne-de-Bel­le­vue.

Ma­rie Ex­press­way un­der­go years of re­cons­truc­tion.

The pro­ject

The pro­po­sed pro­ject would see de­di­ca­ted rail­road tracks built bet­ween the Lu­cienL'Al­lier sta­tion and Sainte-Anne-de-Bel­le­vue.

As a line re­ser­ved ex­clu­si­ve­ly for com­mu­ter rail tra­vel, as ma­ny as 86 trains a day could run eve­ry 15 mi­nutes at peak hours and eve­ry 20 to 30 mi­nutes at non-peak hours fromSainte-Anne-de-Bel­le­vue toMon­tréal.

Train de l'Ouest iden­ti­fied Sainte-An­nede-Bel­le­vue as the most viable con­nec­tion point for Vau­dreuil-Sou­langes and West Is­land com­mu­ters.

The group did not pro­pose ex­ten­ding the line to the off-is­land re­gion, said Lin­coln, as the price tag "would be en­or­mous be­cause of the (cost of cros­sing the) bridges."

If the new tracks are built, com­mu­ters could choose bet­ween the new line and the exis­ting Vau­dreuil-Do­rion/Hud­son line, which cur­rent­ly of­fers 26 trains run­ning du­ring peak com­mu­ter times.

In the past, Vau­dreuil-Do­rion mayor Guy Pi­lon had said the re­gion's bus sys­tem could ea­si­ly shut­tle com­mu­ters to Sainte-An­nede-Bel­le­vue.

Though Ha­mad men­tio­ned 2015-2016 as a tar­get for the com­ple­ted pro­ject, Lin­coln was told by theAMT­that the new line could be run­ning by 2014.

And while Train de l'Ouest is hap­py with this week's an­noun­ce­ment, Lin­coln says he will not re­lax un­til the go­vern­ment ap­proves the pro­ject in full.

"For now we sit back...we don't want to be a nui­sance, but we watch it ca­re­ful­ly for the next six­months to see what hap­pens."

PHOTOTHÈQUE

A de­di­ca­ted com­mu­ter rail­road line could be­come a rea­li­ty by 2014, according to Train de l'Ouest.

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