Transport Quebec needs to communicate: NDG
Published Tuesday, March 25, 2014 2:58PM EDT
Last Updated Monday, March 31, 2014 7:28AM EDT
With Montreal drivers who rely on the Turcot Interchange bracing for months of traffic headaches due to begin Monday, the city of Montreal says Transport Quebec has a communication problem.
Two ramps from Highway 15 North -- to the 20 West and 720 East -- are scheduled to close on Monday March 31, 2014 and will stay closed until the end of June.
The provincial agency is recommending drivers take a 4 km detour, continuing north to Cote St. Luc Rd. and looping to the 15 South, then making the necessary connections on that side of the Interchange.
NDG Borough mayor Russell Copeman said he was extremely frustrated to learn of the construction by reading a press release, especially due to other work taking part in the area that will also divert drivers to Cote St. Luc Rd.
In recent weeks Transport Quebec has closed the St. Jacques St. entrance to the 720 East, and in the months to come will begin demolishing the St. Jacques St. bridge, meaning tens of thousands of drivers will have no choice but to go through Cote St. Luc Rd. to get to their destination.
"The mere suggestion that you bring the 21,000 people who use those ramps to the corner of Decarie and Cote St. Luc is so ludicrous. There have to be other options," Copeman said.
"We've got to ensure that Transport Quebec advises drivers that there are other alternates which I think make a great deal more sense in terms of efficiency than bringing you to the corner of Decarie and Cote St. Luc Rd."
Copeman said it would make more sense for drivers from the South Shore to use the the Bonaventure Expressway instead.
A Transport Quebec spokesperson said while 21,000 drivers use those two ramps every day, that doesn't mean they'll all take the Cote St. Luc exit.
“Naturally people will reroute, change their itineraries or their time of travelling,” said Sarah Bensadoun.
Finding detours may be difficult because of other road construction taking place simultaneously.
Work that begins next week on Sherbrooke St. east of Decarie Blvd. will leave only one lane open for much of the spring and summer.
Meanwhile the St. Jacques St. bridge over the Decarie Expressway will be demolished in May or June.
Given the still-unfinished roadwork being done to access the McGill superhospital, residents are not impressed by the lack of coordination.
"They're running by the seat of their pants. As a resident that concerns me. That really concerns me that there wasn't enough proper planning, and it's planning as they go," said Jill Prescesky at a meeting for the MUHC.
Derek Robertson said at that same meeting that he gave up his car last year, knowing it would be an extremely frustrating way to commute because of the lack of options.
"It became very very difficult to get around and I knew it would become more difficult."