Commuters confused about alternative commutes when stretch of Two Mountains train line closes
Published Wednesday, March 4, 2020 7:23PM EST Last Updated Thursday, March 5, 2020 8:51AM EST
MONTREAL -- In less than a month, a stretch of the Two Mountains train line will shut down for two years, and commuters are still confused about how exactly they'll get to work.
Francis Millaire spends about an hour and 15 minutes in transit on his daily commute to work, but when the Two Mountains line is shut down between the De Ruisseau and Central stations, that number could double.
"This is unimaginable," he said. "You can't work eight hours and be commuting for four hours. That means you're away for 12 hours. You can't leave your kids for 12 hours."
As an alternative route, commuters will have to take a train, then a bus, then a metro to get downtown.
The Quebec Transport Ministry (MTQ) is working on creating a direct bus route to downtown from Two Mountains.
"With those measures, it will take about 35 maybe 40 minutes, but I think 35 minutes more to get downtown," said Quebec Junior Transport Minister Chantal Rouleau.
There are also plans to create a reserved bus lane for Highway 13, but it's not clear when it will be ready or how frequently it will run.
"We need more details," said Millaire.
Discounts will be available, but Laval commuters feel left out because the fastest route - via the Montmorency metro - won't qualify. They would have to take a much longer route via Bois Frans to get a rebate.
"I'm going to be paying for the Montreal REM pass plus the Laval pass, which is more money than I'm paying for the tram zone 3 right now," said Chomedey resident Bonnie Willis. "We, in Chomedey are really stuck between a rock and a hard place."
Commuters want the tunnel closure to be postponed until a better solution can be found.
"People are facing consequences like having to quit work or having to move," said Millaire. "These are grave consequences."