The STM’s articulated buses are here!
Montréal, August 11, 2009 – This afternoon, the Chairman of the STM Board of Directors and city councillor for the Mile-End district of Plateau Mont-Royal Borough, Michel Labrecque, welcomed the arrival of articulated buses in Montréal, with the Mayor of Montréal, Gérald Tremblay, and André Lavallée, the mayor of Rosemont – La Petite-Patrie Borough, vice president of the city’s Executive committee, in charge of the city’s transportation plan, urban landscaping, heritage and design, in attendance. These buses are the first to be acquired by the STM since the Board of Directors approved a $182 M loan in December 2006 to finance the purchase of 202 low-floor articulated buses. “At the time, we had already indicated that the first articulated buses would be rolling on the streets of Montréal sometime in 2009,” declared Mr. Labrecque. “And now it is coming true because, by the end of this year, we will have taken delivery of 58 of these buses, allowing us to gradually integrate them, during the fall, into service on the 69 – Gouin, 121 – Sauvé/Côte-Vertu and 467 – Express Saint-Michel bus routes, thereby improving our service yet again,” pointed out the Chairman. “Montréal is a city of public transit and active means of transportation, and the proof is in the arrival of these new articulated buses. Cities that have first-rate public transit systems are the dynamic ones. Thanks to improved services by the STM and to the different projects either developed or supported by our administration, we are preparing for the future of our city by making public transportation the preferred solution for the mobility of citizens,” declared the Mayor of Montréal. “In accordance with the transportation plan, with the improved performance of buses, the creation of new reserved lanes and the implementation of bus priority measures, we are taking the necessary steps to ensure that STM buses provide stiff competition to cars in terms of travel times and comfort. More and more car drivers will no doubt come to realize that it is faster, more comfortable and less expensive to take the bus rather than their car. We are suggesting that citizens adopt real changes in their habits and behaviour,” declared André Lavallée. The purchase of this type of bus is one of the strategies put forward by the STM to fulfill customer expectations, particularly in terms of comfort aboard the bus. Indeed, the articulated vehicles boast these features: capacity of 115 persons (vs 75 in a standard bus), seating for 47 (vs 31 in a standard bus), new access ramp, new and improved reserved area for wheelchairs and strollers, new design for seats and support bars, wider central aisle, new windows at the rear of the bus, full-width top-opening side windows, and added cameras. In addition to the 58 buses expected in 2009, the next 82 vehicles will be delivered to the STM in 2010, followed by 62 more in 2011. The three buses received so far are being used to train bus drivers and maintenance personnel. In closing, the Chairman insisted upon the fact that the STM is currently going through an unprecedented period of growth and effervescence. “Thanks to investments by the different levels of government, the STM has entered the 21st century of public transportation, constantly working to improve its services and operational performance,” concluded Mr. Labrecque, before inviting everyone to join in the movement. Indeed, the more people use public transit, the more they are doing their share for the environment and in doing so, they make it possible for everyone to breathe a little easier. – 30 –