2007-05-01

Four Times More Cities in Quebec Have a Subway Than in Ontario

Alright, so the title needs work. I was going to post this in French, but I figure most French speaking people this side of Paris know by now that in Quebec, even Laval has the subway.

And not some cheap imitation subway either (take that Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Scarborough). Heck no. We are talking the real deal here. The type of subway that makes absolutely no sense unless you amortise it over 100 years and include intangibles like being able to brag your better than Scarborough (actually, I think the real subway does go all the way to Scarborough, but for the sake of argument, let's pretends it ends in East York.)

Since the subways systems of Toronto (a city that now includes the aforementioned Scarborough), Calgary and Edmonton are each wholly in their respective cities (thanks to rather large area cities), Quebec can brag about being the only Canadian province with an inter-municipal subway system. Four by my count. Four! (Longueuil, Westmount, Montreal and now Laval). And all underground. That is where sofisticated people move around (take that Vancouver hicks).

A subway transports as many people as a six lane highway. Ironically, the Quebec government is building a six lane highway to Laval. The problem is, the population of the greater Montreal isn't increasing. More transportation for the same amount of taxpayers.

Still, as a citizen of Moncton, I'm jealous. I want a subway to. Heck, I'd even settle for a Skytrain or Edmonton style light rail. Hey, maybe we can buy Montreal's monorail (the one at LaRonde, the Expo67 amusement park that still opens in the Summer). Too expensive? Pff, half of NewBrunswick's budget comes from the feds. We should get our fair share (not our fault if our harbour is clean, we shouldn't be penalised for that).

If I could end on a serious note. Coodos for the Quebec government's decision to stick with the same technology as the rest of the metro. The Scarborough Light Rail has proven disastrous. If you have ever climbed three stories (more like 6 really) only to have to walk them down 20 minutes later, you will understand that taking 3 modes of transportation is no fun at all, especially when one is underground and the other is high it the airs (Granted, getting downtown from Université de Montréal isn't that much fun either, even if it is all subway; a transfer is a transfer, all hail Ottawa's transitway).

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