COVID prompting city of Montreal to review all roadwork sites to ease mobility

ROADWORK

Montreal mayor Valerie Plante says they're going to review all of their roadwork sites to try to make things a little easier for people.

Speaking at this morning's executive committee meeting, the mayor said they're trying to catch up on fixing aging watermains and roads after years of neglect as well as embarking on major projects such as the St. Denis express bike lanes. 

But Plante said they realize that roadwork sites plus COVID make things more difficult and some people are asking for a little break and some stabillity. So the mayor said they'll go over all roadwork projects to try to tweak the planned schedule of work and how roadwork is managed to make sure mobility is smoother and to make people's lives a little easier.

Roadwork compensation program to be tweaked for St.Denis merchants inconvenienced by work on express bike lanes

At the same time, Plante insisted they are going full speed ahead with the controversial St. Denis express bike lanes to make the street safer for everybody. 

The mayor said she's asked her economic development department to adapt the roadwork compensation program for St. Denis merchants inconvenienced by the coming construction. Plante said she understands some merchants have concerns, exacerbated by the pandemic.

Traffic expert Rick Leckner said he's a little surprised that the city has to review all the roadwork sites now when that should be an ongoing exercise.

"The crisis has clearly put additional speedbumps in the process because the city, in its wisdom, had added over 300 km of bike lanes and security lanes. I always hope that they look at things on a global basis for the city and not just plop things into each borough," said Leckner in an interview with CJAD 800.

"I'm not sure they do that and that is clearly what they have to do because there are a lot of things going on - there's major roadwork the city does, there's roadwork the boroughs do, and then there's all these added bike paths. But there has to be a very (harmonious) plan for this to make sure the pieces fit together."

Leckner said an important measure is to get out in the field.

"Get out in the roads, elected officials, and see with your own eyes what's going on because I don't believe they do that on a regular basis and they don't see the impact of what they're doing," said Leckner.

"We've got this fight between cars, pedestrians and bikes and all the roadwork and all the other things that are going on. You need to live this to be able to manage it."
 

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