Former STM board member has problems with proposed Pink Line

A former STM board member is criticizing the Plante administration's tunnel vision on its proposed Pink Line addition to the city's Metro system.

City councillor Marvin Rotrand, who spent the better part of the past 17 years on the STM's board of directors, is speaking out against the plan, saying the City needs to consider all of its options and not only Valerie Plante's flashy campaign promise.

Rotrand told CTV Montreal the plans for the Pink Line are vague and the time spent on the idea is hurting other potential projects.

"How do you go to the government of Quebec and say 'ask the federal government to invest in this?'. It may be $6 billion but we don't know where it's going, we don't know how it's going to run," Rotrand said.

Rotrand points out the proposed line connecting Lachine to Montreal North, parts of the track go both underground and aboveground, would force the STM to purchase all new metro cars.

"Our metro runs on rubber tires. It cannot go on the surface. Has anybody thought of that?" Rotrand said. "What it basically means is that if we are going to build this Pink line it will have to have different rolling stock. It will have to be steel wheel technology."

Prior to the STM purchasing its Azur metro cars, it rejected a Chinese firm that had proposed altering the metro network to use steel wheels at a lower cost than using rubber tires.

The CAQ government has not put its support behind the Pink Line, instead being open to a Yellow Line extension through the South Shore.

The STM's vice-chair and Executive Committee member Craig Sauvé called Rotrand's complaints premature because the Pink Line is still just an idea and nothing is set.

"With what is going to come from the study we'll be able to elaborate how this vision will concretely take form," Sauvé said. "The metro system, it's getting clogged; it's at capacity, so something has to be brought into it to give it some relief."