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April 2022 - The tunnel will be built with a tunnel boring machine (TBM)
This is a first for the Montréal métro network. This construction method gets the work done faster, provides longer-lasting results and is better for the environment.
In due time, you will be invited to help us choose a name for the tunnel borer by voting on suggestions from our employees.
The cutterhead grinds away the bedrock
Following the expert committee’s work to optimize the project budget, some parameters have been revised.
- Construction of all five new universally accessible stations up to Anjou as planned
- Reconfiguration of the Pie-IX station bus terminal
- Removal of lower-traffic secondary entrance buildings (Viau and Langelier)
- Sharing of the planned secondary entrance building at Lacordaire station with CDPQ Infra to be integrated with the REM de l’Est.
- Repositioning of the Anjou station with entrance buildings on each side of Highway 25.
- Removal of park-and-ride lot in the Anjou area
- Use of a tunnel boring machine to build the tunnel
- Preparatory work in the Viau area in summer 2022
- Commissioning of the extension in 2029
In the spirit of agility and collaboration, every effort has been made to make this project the best that it can be and to bring us closer to this long-awaited asset for the east end of Montréal.
The STM is now the owner of Le Boulevard shopping centre, having completed the expropriation process started earlier in the project timeline. The mall will be able to remain in operation during the expected construction period of the new Pie-IX station.
This month, the second preparatory worksite for the extension of the Blue line will get up and running at the intersection of Jean-Talon Street and Lacordaire Boulevard. Between now and the spring of 2022, this major work will make it possible to relocate underground utilities (water, sewage and cabling) out of the way of the future station excavation site. Two other locations, namely Viau and Langelier, will undergo similar work later this year.
To learn all the details on this worksite, check the web page of the future Lacordaire station.
The chosen station names will go down in history as a mark of Montrealers’ collective imagination. They should be announced later this year.
The naming committee is composed of several STM representatives, a City of Montréal elected official, representatives from boroughs where the extension is being built and experts in place naming and urban planning. Montréal’s women, cultural communities and Indigenous peoples are also represented on the committee, and proposals from these groups will be given particular consideration.
The beginning of this process marks one more step toward the project’s completion!
In February and March, a public consultation process took place in the form of several information evenings and input sessions. The goal of this community dialogue was to design a project that would integrate seamlessly into the lives of Montrealers.
The Commission leading this process has submitted its report and issued 43 recommendations that will allow us to enrich the project and produce infrastructure that meets the expectations of our customers and citizens. Both the Commission’s report and the STM’s action plan in response to it are available at www.stm.info/consultation.
There’s no doubt about it—the Blue line extension project is right on track!
This is it!
This fall, we will begin preparatory work for the Blue line extension in the area around the future de la Villanelle auxiliary structure. This marks an important milestone in the project’s progress.
The work will mainly involve relocating urban public utilities, giving us free rein to begin the massive excavation that will be needed to build the new infrastructure.
Other target areas
In the next few months, we will also begin work in three other locations, near the future Viau, Lacordaire and Langelier stations. Information on these worksites will be available a few weeks before the start of the work.
The information evenings and input sessions are now closed. We would like to thank you warmly for your relevant and useful comments. This dialogue with the community is essential to helping us design a project that will integrate seamlessly into the lives of Montrealers.
The Commission’s report will be available at stm.info/consultation this summer.
Two new teams of architects have started working on the drawings for the buildings of the future Viau and Lacordaire stations. These complete the design brigade which started work at the end of 2019. An initial draft of the architectural design of these stations will be presented to the public in spring 2020.
Teams of architects have started working on the drawings for the buildings of the future Pie-IX, Langelier and Anjou stations. By the end of the year, two other groups of architects will join the design team and create Viau and Lacordaire stations. An initial draft of the architectural design of these stations will be presented to the public in spring 2020.
In addition to conducting ongoing above-ground seismic surveys and boring tests all along the Blue line extension route, we are collecting geotechnical data at Saint-Michel station.
Our teams will be conducting surveying work on the Saint-Michel tail tracks to gather highly detailed data on the existing tunnel and plan the connection to the new extented tunnel. As the heat released by the trains stationed on the tail tracks interferes with the accuracy of the laser instruments used for surveying, we will have to close the tail tracks on September 21 and 22.
Minor impact on your trips at this station
As trains will not be able to pull onto the tail tracks to turn around, customers going toward Snowdon will exceptionnally have to board on the exit platform. The train will then switch tracks when it departs toward Snowdon.
As part of the input data collection, geotechnical tests have begun along the corridor between Saint-Michel métro station and Highway 25 in Anjou.
The purpose of the tests is to classify soil and rock in the selected area in preparation for the construction of the underground tunnel and stations. The tests comprise two major phases, namely seismic surveys and boring tests.
1. Seismic surveys involve sending waves into the ground along a conducting wire connected to sensors. This non-intrusive, quick, one-time method limits the number of boring tests required for classification that will be conducted in a second phase of exploratory work.
2. Boring tests allow us to obtain more detailed data on soil and rock conditions, such as their resistance and profile. These characteristics serve as input data for the engineers who will design the plans and specifications.
The location where the tests are performed does not necessarily correspond to the locations of future métro stations or tunnels.
The current test involves extending lines over 40 to 70 metres, with sensors installed every 3 metres.
The cable is equipped with sensors that act as refraction wave receivers. The sensors are connected to the seismic line and slightly inserted into the ground or the road along the entire line.
The waves are sent into the ground every 10 metres by manually striking a 20-lb. (9-kg) sledgehammer against a steel plate on the ground. The plate and sledgehammer are connected to the seismic cable, sensors and receivers. The plate is struck several times to ensure that the waves are effectively transmitted all along the seismic line.
The geophysical technician measures the wave refraction data directly on site and ensures that the signals are clear. Subsequent interpretation of the data will help identify the characteristics of the rock.
A drilling rig is used to extract rock cores up to 60 metres underground, below tunnel level.
First, the road is cored for boring to take place. The operation is repeated at regular intervals along the six-kilometre route. The area will be restored after the tests have been completed.
Samples are taken either vertically or diagonally from the soil and rock, depending on the data sought by the geologists.
The soil samples collected are then analyzed in a laboratory to identify their properties and characteristics.
A large-scale project
- 5 new accessible métro stations
- about 6 kilometres of tunnel
- 2 bus terminals
- 1 underground pedestrian tunnel providing a link to the future Pie-IX BRT
- Several equipments and operational infrastructures:
- 7 auxiliary structures housing operational equipment
- 1 power station
- 1 service centre for infrastructure maintenance
- 1 métro garage
Frequently asked questions
The STM will act as the principal contractor and project manager. As operator of the Montréal métro for the past 50 years, the STM has expertise and experience that will benefit the project.
These decisions were made by the métro extension project office, made up of the Agence métropolitaine de transport (AMT) and the Ministère des Transports du Québec (MTQ), from 2011 to 2015. Their analyses led to the finalized design plan regarding:
- Locations of entrance buildings
- Bus terminals
- Park-and-ride lot
They used a method called multidisciplinary analysis (MDA), allowing them to examine the pros, cons and limitations of each option, from the perspective of each of the following disciplines:
- Métro operations
- Public transit and station access
- Urban integration and environment
- Work impact management
- Urban development
These in-depth analyses brought together the various stakeholders (the MTQ, the AMT, the City of Montréal and its relevant boroughs, and the STM) to finalize the design plan that we have today.
For more information and to see the benefits of the chosen options, see our summary (french only).
In February and March 2020, a public consultation process took place in the form of several information evenings and input sessions. The goal of this community dialogue was to design a project that would integrate seamlessly into the lives of Montrealers.
The Commission leading this process has submitted its report and issued 43 recommendations that will allow us to enrich the project and produce infrastructure that meets the expectations of our customers and citizens. Read the report and the action plan.
Our teams are currently conducting analyses to determine the type of train to be used based on the operational requirements specific to the Blue line extension. It is therefore still too early to say whether MR-73 (six or nine cars) or Azur trains will be used.
The offer of service on the Blue line will also be revised to take into account the increase in ridership.
Yes, the new stations will be universally accessible and consequently equipped with elevators.
In January 2021, we formed a naming committee with members from various industries and organizations in an effort to properly represent the diversity of Montréal. We will be able to announce the final name selections by the end of 2022.
In analyzing the name proposals, the committee decided to prioritize women and set an intention to ensure that the final choices represent multicultural and Indigenous realities. The members also made use of the Banque de toponymie municipale, a list of place names continually updated through citizen suggestions.
Yes. This is a first for the Montréal métro network. A tunnel boring machine (TBM) is a piece of equipment that digs and builds underground structures. More specifically, it is a massive rotating drill designed to dig and apply concrete in circular tunnels, galleries and shafts.
This construction method gets the work done faster, provides longer-lasting results and is better for the environment. The TBM also has the advantage of being less noticeable to residents than traditional excavation methods, such as cutting machines and blasting, since it generates less noise and vibration.
In due time, you will be invited to help us choose a name for the tunnel borer by voting on suggestions from our employees.
No, that is not part of the plan.
With the acquisition of the AZUR métro cars and the construction of the Côte-Vertu garage, there will be an increase in the service offer on the Orange line in terms of capacity and frequency. The interval between trains on the Orange line will be two minutes instead of two minutes and 30 seconds during peak periods. Additionally, other major projects should mitigate the impact for Orange line users:
- The Pie-IX BRT, when completed, should provide a connection between the extension of the Blue line and the Green line.
- A connection with the REM is planned for Édouard-Montpetit station to ensure a link with downtown.
Pursuing Envision sustainability verification
In line with our commitment to integrating sustainability best practices, we are pursuing Envision verification for this project. The Envision reference framework was developed to cover all the sustainable development aspects of an infrastructure project and each phase of its life cycle (planning, design, construction, operations and maintenance, and end-of-life). It is the top sustainable development tool in North America for major infrastructure projects such as metro and streetcar systems.
Verifying the project will allow us to:
- Consult and involve stakeholders
- Mitigate construction impacts on our community and environment
- Reduce the impacts of materials used (resource consumption and manufacturing emissions)
- Rehabilitate contaminated land
- Reduce operational impacts (residual materials, water and energy savings, noise and vibration reduction, etc.)
- Improve vegetation cover
- Improve the project’s resilience to climate change
To learn more, visit the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure Website.
The blue line extension project follows in the wake of the Déclaration du gouvernement du Québec et de la Ville de Montréal to revitalize Montréal East. Many projects are underway to give a new impetus to this sector. Increased mobility, economic development, and improved living environments are at the heart of this ambitious project. For more information, see Québec.ca/RevitalisationEstMontreal (in French only).