Montréal is Prepared for Next Winter: 10 New Initiatives to Benefit Pedestrians and Public Transit

    MONTREAL, Sept. 10 /CNW Telbec/ - Mr. Marcel Tremblay, member of the
Montréal Executive Committee responsible for services to citizens accompanied
by Mr. Frank Venneri, Associate Municipal Councillor, are pleased to present
the key initiatives being deployed to improve snow removal operations.
    "Following wide-ranging consultations combined with an excellent
concerted effort that is unprecedented in the city's history, we are proud to
present Montrealers with new and ground-breaking initiatives aimed at
enhancing pedestrian safety and our mass transit system. These measures will
be implemented as of next winter," Mr. Tremblay said.
    "Last winter provided us with an opportunity to review our operations.
Montréal is changing as the number of vehicles is constantly rising,
500,000 people use the downtown area each day and environmental standards are
stricter-which is the way it should be. These factors have, over the years,
complicated the entire snow removal process. These new measures take all of
these changes into account and are aimed at upgrading the services we offer. I
am convinced residents will appreciate improvements such as earlier morning
and evening clearance of reserved bus lanes and snow removal activities
coordinated over a maximum of 17 arteries in 24 hours," said Mr. Tremblay.
    Different strategies will be applied to snowfalls of less than or of more
than 30 cm. Certain measures are specifically designed for snowfalls in excess
of 30 cm to ensure the lengthier removal operations they require can be
completed as quickly as possible.

    Principle initiatives involve:

    1.  Clearing the 9 reserved bus lanes on a priority basis, before morning
        bus service begins.
    2.  Clearing 21 specific sectors or arteries listed as "priorities" by
        the MTC.
    3.  Snow removal coordinated among the boroughs over a maximum of
        17 routes.
    4.  Info-Neige, a pilot project to permit residents of six boroughs to
        get real-time Web-based section-by-section updates of removal
    5.  5,000 free over night parking spaces during loading operations.
    6.  Training of supervisors.
    7.  More mechanics on call.
    8.  Six "heavy snow routes" (30 cm or more).
    9.  Special action plan.
    10. Optimization of snow disposal sites.

    The cost of the enhancements to existing snow removal operations is
$1.5 million for 2008 and a recurring sum of $2.7 million as of 2009. Starting
in 2008, work costing $1 million will also be carried out at the St-Michel
quarry and the snow dumps. An investment of $15 million has been earmarked for
fixed capital expenditures at other snow removal sites from 2009 through 2011.
    This new city-wide labour organization and sharing of responsibilities
will enhance Montréal's performance in the area of snow removal and result in
better services to citizens.

For further information:

For further information: Joan Lacasse, Service des communications et des
relations avec les citoyens, (514) 872-2921; Source: Darren Becker, Press
Attaché, (514) 872-6412

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