Dans un avis dévastateur que La Presse a obtenu, l’Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain (ARTM) conclut que d’autres options que le REM de l’Est doivent être envisagées tant ce nouveau tronçon du train électrique comporte d’inconvénients. La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ)...
In french only, sorry. The ARTM published a report that severely criticizes the REM de l'Est for it's poor integration with existing network, low ridership gains, lack of communication between stakeholders and cannibalization of the existing user base. It praised the willingness of the government to invest so much into public transit (10 billion).
CDPQi has replied it will not go forward if ARTM maintains this stance after review. They are working on a plan with ARTM to adress all those issues. Ironically they accuse ARTM of not telling them in advance that they were working on this report (ARTM criticized CDPQi for not informing them of the entire REM de l'Est project). CDPQi has also said they reached out to the city of Montréal. The city is apparently not giving CDPQi its approval yet, which is another necessary thing for CDPQi to go ahead with the project.
The government is critical of the report, gives its full support to CDPQi and vows to make this project a reality. The minister in charge of Montreal (who is also Pointe-aux-Trembles MNA) attacked ARTM on several fronts, including not being transparent and using bad data.
Expect more changes to this project before we see shovels hit the ground. As a matter of personal opinion this is not necessarily a bad thing, since it could lead to better integration and better cooperation between stakeholders. As a taxpayer it's also reassuring to see that a 10 billion dollar project is being debated and discussed as opposed to shoved down our throat.