During his term of office as Chairman of the Board Claude Trudel revitalized the Société de transport de Montréal

    VERDUN, QC, Jan. 27 /CNW Telbec/ - Verdun Mayor Claude Trudel is stepping
down as Chairman of the Board of the Société du transport de Montréal (STM),
proud of the many achievements that have revitalized this organization.
    Mr. Trudel is, in fact, leaving his successor a better managed
corporation, in better financial health and better integrated into Montréal's
economic, social and cultural life than it was at the beginning of his term of
office in January 2006.
    Moreover, during the past three years, the bus-metro passenger traffic
increased 6.5%. Spurred on by Mr. Trudel, the STM undertook a vast change in
policy to get closer to its transit users and partners, to further promote its
services and to improve its public image, and particularly by increasing the
transit corporation's involvement in the community.
    At the beginning of his term of office, Mr. Trudel recalled his
objectives in these terms: "In agreeing to chair the STM's Board of Directors
back in January 2006, I wanted that year to be the start of a new day for the
corporation. I wanted the impact of my vision of public transit to be a change
in corporate policy bearing the stamp of vitality, modern style and commitment
to the community. It was also my intention to update the organization's
operations and to get it to become aware of the importance of its role in
making Montréal more centred on public transit."
    Mr. Trudel has left his mark by improving the STM's performance from both
a financial standpoint and insofar as the development of its services are
concerned. Here are a few of the accomplishments:

    - Agreement with the Federal, provincial and municipal governments to
      increase the financing of infrastructure programs (via SOFIL)
    - Agreement with the Québec government and Ville de Montréal to carry out
      a service improvement program in keeping with Québec's mass transit
      policy (Politique québécoise de transport collectif (PQTC)). Thanks to
      this policy, an additional $100 million will be annually injected into
      developing and improving services.
    - Agreement with the CMM on the operating costs of the metro, which is
      now recognized as metropolitan facilities
    - Approval of the STM'S 2007-2011 Business Plan, with its focus on
      sustainable development. This plan is in line with Montréal's
      transportation plan (Plan de transport de Montréal)
    - Opening of the three STM metro stations on Laval territory
    - Execution of the program to renovate 423 MR-73 cars
    - Continuation of the Réno-Métro program (which is integrating the
      Réno-Stations and Réno-Systèmes programs for fixed equipment)
    - Launch of the call for tenders for replacement of the 336 MR-63 cars,
      an over $1-billion project
    - Successful implementation of the new sales and collection system, and
      integration of the smart card
    - Settlement with the MTQ regarding replacement of the first generation
      of low-floor buses
    - Implementation of PASTEC, the largest service improvement plan,
      designed to increase transit user traffic by 8% between 2007 and 2011
    - Contract negotiations: Despite a very limited financial framework,
      settlement with 4 of the 6 bargaining units, including the two largest
      ones-the drivers (CUPE) and maintenance employees (CSN). The settlement
      was in keeping with the framework (freeze in 2007, then 2% for the
      subsequent years), and 5-year agreements were signed (it was 3 years in
      the past). Labour peace is therefore guaranteed until 2011.
    - Development of some fifty partnerships with the City, associations as
      well as cultural, sports and environmental organizations (objective: to
      bring the STM closer to its users)
    - Maintenance of the A+ credit rating assigned by Standard and Poor's
    - Negotiation of SWAP (hedging transactions) to protect the corporation
      against fuel price fluctuations. Estimated savings of between $5 and
      $6 million.
    - Implementation of new collection boxes and the OPUS card: recovery of
      approximately $6 million
    - 23 million more trips since 2005, including 15 million between 2007 and
      2008 (up 4%, or half the objective targeted by the PQTC for 2007-2011)
    - 26% more service in the metro (with the opening of the three stations
      in Laval; increase in service on the Blue line and the extension of
      rush hours)
    - 1,000 more departures on the 26 busiest bus lines in 2009

    Sustainable development

    In addition, during Mr. Trudel's term of office, the STM embarked on a
sustainable development focus. The concrete impact of all this was the
implementation of biodiesel as an alternative transportation fuel for the
entire bus fleet, the decision to purchase hybrid buses, articulated
(accordion) buses and greener supervision vehicles, approval of the project to
modernize the Legendre transit centre within an eco-construction orientation,
continuation of the environmentally-friendly driving program (Conduite
écologique) among bus drivers and various partners, with Equiterre, Earth Day,
Communauto, etc.

    Appreciation of the arts

    Mr. Trudel also encouraged appreciation of artwork in the metro, through
the implementation of Rose-Marie Goulet's original project (blue car -
temporary artwork for six months), continuation of the program to restore
existing artwork, the launch of the Guide Ulysse, which presents the
underground art gallery and earned the Board of Trade of Metropolitan
Montreal's Prix Arts-Affaires for partnership with the Association des
directeurs de musées montréalais (museum days and museum passes) and the
recent creation of a Board of Directors' committee on heritage and the arts.

    Impressive results

    On leaving the STM, Mr. Trudel is therefore leaving a company:

    - that is well-managed and in better financial health
    - whose ridership is on the rise
    - that is enjoying continuing success (resolutely committed to improving
      services, through the implementation of PASTEC)
    - that has undertaken a vast change in policy to get closer to its riders
      and partners, in order to further promote its services and improve its
      public image
    - that is better mobilized. In fact, according to a survey on
      mobilization, conducted among employees by an external firm, the index
      of confidence in the future rose, between 2006 and 2008, from +9 to +
      47, and the communication index increased from -33 to +40-a record,
      according to these experts!


    A few figures

                               End of 2005       End of 2008       2005-2008
    Ranking of businesses
     in Québec                        16th              14th
    Bus-metro ridership      359.3 million   382.5 million(*)          +6.5%
    Average ridership on
     weekdays                    1 million       1.3 million
    Paratransit ridership      1.7 million     2.2 million(*)         +29.4%
    Bus service hours        4.227 million   4.295 million(*)          +1.6%
    Kilometres covered by
     bus                        70 million      73 million(*)          +4.3%
    Kilometres covered by
     metro                    58.8 million    75.6 million(*)         +28.6%
    Price of CAM - in
     keeping with the policy
     of increasing it, in
     line with TPI and CIP
     indexes                           $61            $66.25           +8.6%
    (*) According to 2008 Budget estimates, as the official figures haven't
        yet been unveiled

For further information:

For further information: Francine Morin, Responsable du protocole et des
relations publiques, Verdun Borough, (514) 765-7282, Fax: (514) 765-7289,
francine.morin@verdun.ca, francinemorin@ville.montreal.qc.ca; Source: Verdun
Borough (ville.montreal.qc.ca/verdun)

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