Bus and métro networks and paratransit service will remain accessible and the STM will maintain its service offer during the new lockdown period beginning on January 9.
Montréal, January 7, 2021 – With the announcement of the new lockdown measures that will be in effect beginning January 9 for a minimum of four weeks, including a curfew from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m., the Société de transport de Montréal (STM) wishes to provide an update to reassure its customers who will be affected by this situation, particularly essential workers. Both the bus and métro networks, as well as the paratransit service, will remain available, and the STM will maintain its current level of service.
“Since the beginning of this crisis, essential workers have been able to count on us for transportation, and the coming weeks will be no exception. It is important for us to maintain a sufficient level of service under these exceptional circumstances to enable compliance with physical distancing requirements. Doing this is helping to make public transit a safe mode of transportation, as no outbreaks have been attributed to the use of our networks,” said Luc Tremblay, Chief Executive Officer of the STM.
The STM expects ridership over the next few weeks to be higher than during the first lockdown in the spring, as more business sectors remain open. As such, the STM will not make any major changes to its services, as these have already been optimized to account for both transit needs and operational capacity with the aim of enabling compliance with physical distancing requirements.
Specific ad hoc adjustments may be made, depending on the conditions observed on the ground. Any such changes will be made in the interest of ensuring proper resource management while allowing essential workers to continue making trips under the safest possible conditions. As the situation evolves, customers are invited to use the usual information tools to plan their trips. The STM also wishes to remind customers that they can now see the occupancy levels of the next bus to arrive at a given stop and of métro trains on the Orange line.
Improvements to winter plan for people experiencing homelessness
Because homelessness is a complex social phenomenon involving many civil society stakeholders, the STM is already working closely with the SPVM and its partners in community organizations. These efforts will be redoubled in the coming weeks in order to improve the winter plan. Specific measures will be implemented in light of the 8 p.m. curfew, in particular an increased presence of on-the-ground teams, to continue providing our customers with safe transportation while aiming to allow people experiencing homelessness to access the appropriate resources.
Maintenance of active worksites
The STM’s main active worksites will be maintained. This includes accessibility projects at métro stations and the construction of new infrastructure, such as the Bellechasse bus garage. However, work will have to end before 8 p.m. to comply with government policy. No new projects will begin before February 8. Additionally, all health measures will be enforced, particularly keeping the number of people present at a worksite simultaneously to a minimum.
With a bus network covering 500 square kilometres and 68 métro stations with 126 entrances buildings and 50 public access points, it would be impossible for STM employees to monitor each customer’s reason for making each trip. The STM therefore leaves it to the appropriate authorities to fill this role and call upon the civic duty of all residents to comply with this curfew and the new lockdown measures in place.
“During the day, if you have an essential trip to take by bus, métro or paratransit, take all recommended precautions in place and, from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m., leave our networks free for those who really need them: the essential workers on the front lines of this pandemic,” said Philippe Schnobb, Chairman of the STM Board of Directors.