Pending development of Quartier de l'Agora - The STL Postpones Its Aerial Tramway Project

LAVAL, QC, April 8, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Despite the findings of a feasibility study that an aerial tramway would be viable and represent a very beneficial means of transportation, the Société de transport de Laval (STL) has to postpone its project to implement such a system in Laval, pending the development of Quarter de l'Agora.

Such a project is no longer the priority it was, when Place Bell was to be built in Quartier de l'Agora, west of the Laurentian Autoroute (the 15). The site has now been relocated to the Montmorency metro area.

As it may be recalled, the aerial tramway project was sparked by the need to link that multi-purpose complex bound by Daniel-Johnson, Chomedey, Notre-Dame and Saint-Martin boulevards and the Montmorency metro station. At the time, an aerial tramway was the chosen option due to its cost, which was estimated at $25-30 million to set up a one-kilometre line, compared to $ 200 million for the same distance by metro.

Promising results

Nevertheless, based on the findings of the feasibility study, undertaken in April 2012 and co-financed by the STL and the Agence métropolitaine de transport (AMT), an aerial tramway would be beneficial for Laval and this means of transportation will become indispensable once the downtown area is developed to its full potential.

"According to the findings of this study, there are some technical challenges, but they can be overcome. From a financial standpoint, an aerial tramway is also financially profitable as long as there is a sufficient number of transit users," pointed out Guy Picard, the STL's General Manager. "We are pleased with these findings, as the aerial tramway is an avant-garde means of transportation and represents a reliable, quiet technology that has been time-tested under winter conditions. Since it produces no greenhouse gas emissions, it is also in keeping with the environmentally-friendly policies adopted by Ville de Laval," he added.

The STL is therefore keeping this option open if ever new links need to be developed and require the implementation of high-capacity mass transit service. The aerial tramway capacity has been estimated at 5,000 people an hour in each direction.

A number of major cities, such as New York, Lisbon, Singapore and Portland, have already successfully set up this means of transportation.

The STL, Facts and Figures

  • The STL operates over 20 million trips annually.
  • The STL has rolled out its STL Synchro system, which informs transit users, in real time, about bus schedules and progress along its routes.
  • The overhaul of its bus network, made necessary by the extension of the metro to Laval, gave rise to a 32% increase in service, faster trips, more direct bus routes and an increase in ridership outside rush hours, on evenings and weekends, on 12 routes.
  • The fare policy is aimed at encouraging families to use public transit: an adult paying a regular fare on weekends and holidays may be accompanied by up to five children of 11 years of age or under at no extra charge. This policy also applies to every summer day from July 1 to Labour Day. Moreover, the $1 fare on smog alert days in summer is a first in Québec.
  • The STL has also teamed up with the Association québécoise de lutte contre la pollution atmosphérique, Communauto and The Carpooling Network, to promote sustainable transportation in Laval.
  • All of the vehicles on the STL's fleet use B5 biodiesel fuel.
  • The STL announces news and service notices on its Facebook and Twitter pages.
  • The STL offers its transit users the opportunity to register on My STL in order to receive notices on the bus routes that they usually take and obtain information on what's new at the STL.
  • Since the introduction of its Vehicle Scheduling Control System in 2009, the STL has increased its on-time performance to nearly 90%.
  • The STL has received a number of awards of distinction, including the Grand Prix for excellence in public transit from the AQTR in 2010, ranking it as an outstanding corporation.
  • In 2011, the STL received the Communication Grand Public award from the AQTR for its Smog Alert program.
  • In May 2012, the STL launched its new service: STL Sustainable Mobility Solution, designed for companies and organizations concerned about finding ways of more efficiently managing their employees' commutes.
  • In May 2012, the Canadian Urban Transit Association (CUTA) presented the STL with its Corporate Leadership Award, in the Innovation category, for its CLIC project: carpooling with electric vehicles.
  • In November 2012, the STL signed the Charter on Sustainable Development of the UITP (International Association of Public Transport), as a pledge signatory.
  • In March 2013, the STL became the first public transit corporation in Québec to be certified as a "Healthy Enterprise".

SOURCE: Société de transport de Laval

For further information:

Marie-Céline Bourgault
Director, Communications and Marketing
Société de transport de Laval
450 662-5429
mcbourgault@stl.laval.qc.ca  

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Société de transport de Laval

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