Adaptation of four bus garages - The STM’s electrification strategy takes a big step forward

Press release

The STM applauds the authorization of a $671.4 million loan by-law alllowing the complete electrification of the four first bus garages.

Montréal, December 10, 2020 – The STM’s shift toward making its surface transit system 100% electric takes an important step, with the authorization by the City of Montréal’s executive committee for a $671.4 million loan by-law. This amount will cover Phase 1 of the STM bus garage electrification program. Given that the transition toward fully electric technologies requires that the STM do major work on its facilities, the Montréal transit service provider will be able to lay the cornerstone for a successful large-scale shift.  

“It’s a bold move for Montréal’s elected officials, and I applaud their commitment to supporting the STM in a historic process that will help improve the mobility of Montrealers in the near future. After all, 2025 is fast approaching,” says Philippe Schnobb, Chairman of the Board of Directors.

Four bus garages: a first step

The amount will cover the adaptation work on the buildings, and the acquisition and installation of equipment needed to maintain, recharge and efficiently operate fleets of fully electric vehicles at four bus garages. Of that amount, $160 million will be allocated to the Bellechasse bus garage, currently under construction, so that it can eventually house 200 electric buses. It will be the first STM bus garage totally adapted to electrification, and one of the first in Canada. The future east end bus garage will be next in line, followed by the Saint-Michel bus garage, designed for paratransit vehicles, and the Stinson bus garage. The latter is already partially adapted since it currently houses the STM’s first 30 long-range electric buses.

“Phase 1 of the program, planned over a five-year period, is the first major step of a process ultimately aimed at adapting all our bus garages. It’s all conditional on getting financial support from the Quebec government. Financial support from our partners is essential to allowing us to successfully shift toward electrification,” says Luc Tremblay, Chief Executive Officer of the STM.

The STM stays the course on electrification

With this clear signal, the STM’s teams of experts will continue their work, in particular with regard to writing technical studies and drafting specifications on which the calls for tenders, which should be published within the next few months, will be based.

Despite the pandemic and its impacts on the transit system, the STM reiterates its commitment to the electrification of its surface network, with its goal of purchasing only electric buses as of 2025. The transition of these first four bus garages to fully electric facilities is a major and concrete milestone.