Dead end job: Montreal's traffic czar no longer employed
Published Thursday, July 13, 2017 4:49PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, July 13, 2017 7:05PM EDT
Montreal's traffic czar no longer works for the city.
Earlier this year Mayor Denis Coderre convinced Pierre Lacasse, who had a 28-year-long career as a traffic reporter, to come out of retirement and co-ordinate construction projects in the city.
Less than three months into the job, Lacasse and the city have parted ways.
At this point it is not clear if Lacasse quit, or if he was fired by the administration.
A statement from the city of Montreal reads "The experience wasn't conclusive. We put an end to his contract."
He was hired in April at a salary of more than $100,000 per year for at least two years.
Lacasse could not be reached for comment.
Traffic delays in Montreal have been steadily getting worse for the past decade. Indeed, Lacasse told CTV in 2009 -- when he was working for Info 690 radio -- that the traffic then was the worst he had seen in years.
Since then the amount of streets under construction has increased, with Montreal now planning to work on 290 km of streets each year until 2027, with a budget of $1.8 billion this year and $2.2 billion next year.
In June Lacasse said the amount of construction work planned by Montreal alone was stunning, telling CTV "it's going to be hell." And that did not even touch on the work being done by the province on highways and bridges.
Craig Sauvé, the traffic critic for the opposition at City Hall, said Lacasse's departure was a sign that Coderre was just paying lip service to communicating problems to drivers.
"From the very beginning the hiring of Lacasse was a publicity stunt by Denis Coderre to make seem as though he is taking action against the city's transport crisis," said Sauvé.
"It is clear that the Coderre administration is not ready to make the crucial choices to reduce automobile traffic in Montreal."