Universal accessibility at Villa-Maria station

Universal accessibility in our public transportation network is a strategic priority.  Major work will take place at Villa-Maria station to make it universally accessible with the addition of three elevators. The work should be finished in Winter 2022.

Bus and métro services will be maintained at all times, but bus stops will be relocated during the work.

Starting September 3, 2019, the bus loop around the entrance building will be closed so that we can begin excavating and breaking up the rock to move the project forward. This first phase of the work will start at the beginning of September and last until November 2020.

Questions and answers

The work will begin in September 2019 and finish in Winter 2022. This major project will be deployed in well-defined phrases to reduce the impact on customers and residents.

Yes, bus and métro services will be maintained at all times.

Yes, the 24 - Sherbrooke, 103 - Monkland and 162 - Westminster bus stops will be relocated close to the station on Décarie street as the work will take place in the bus loop around the station.

Construction work is likely to generate noise and will normally be scheduled between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. In accordance with municipal by-laws and to keep the construction on schedule, some work may continue over weekends.

Excavations in the rock bed generally require micro-blasting. While this is the preferred method, some parts of the excavation will require rock breaking performed with mechanical equipment.

In a later phase, partitions will be installed in the station, particularly on the pedestrian walkway and the stairs leading to the platforms to close off the work area.

Adding elevators to an existing building requires extensive planning and represents a major challenge. The STM, however, is committed to improving the physical accessibility of its infrastructures and helping customers move vertically. The expansion will include the installation of a new elevator to connect the street level to the level where the station agent’s fare booth is.

Villa-Maria station has a work of art featuring enormous, brightly coloured polymer concrete circles placed at different angles to direct customers. Some of the circles will have to be moved so that we can install worksite fences, but they will be put back at the end of the work.

The required excavation work will generate vibrations that could be felt by residents near the worksite. We have hired an independent consulting firm to survey (mainly photograph) all buildings around the worksite. These inspections will serve to document the condition of the buildings before and after construction.

In the unlikely event that any damage is reported, an expert opinion could help determine whether the damage is the result of the vibrations produced by the worksite. Property owners affected by this measure will be notified accordingly.

The order in which stations are made accessible is influenced by various criteria. Transfer stations were given priority and are almost complete.

We also consider other factors, such as whether the station is a terminus or is situated in a densely populated neighbourhood, or whether making it accessible will help provide an even distribution of accessible stations throughout the network. The technical difficulties specific to each site also impact our ability to quickly set up worksites.

Universal accessibility means that everyone can properly access, navigate and get around the métro station and make full use of all services offered to the public.

A peak at the future facade of Villa-Maria station

The Accessibility program is made possible thanks to additional funding announced by the federal and provincial governments for the purpose of speeding up work on universal access and making 41 métro stations accessible by 2025.

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