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Redesign of transit tickets: a mixed reception in Greater Montreal

The second phase of the Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain (ARTM) fare overhaul, which affects Montreal, Laval and part of the South Shore, will be rolled out as of July 1, a change that leaves a transport association mixed .

• Read also: Public transit in the suburbs of Montreal: two different worlds

• Read also: “Money”, an obstacle to free public transit in Montreal

For the Association for collective transport of the South Shore (ATCRS), which notices the price of the unit passage of the metro from Longueuil to Montreal to rise from $3.50 to $5.25, this increase simply does not pass.

“For a couple who takes the metro in Longueuil to get to Montreal, we are talking about twenty dollars for a trip. At this price, the automobile becomes very competitive,” denounced in a press release Axel Fournier, spokesperson for the ATCRS.

Reached by telephone, the ARTM’s Senior Advisor – Public Affairs and Media Relations, Simon Charbonneau, put the situation into perspective.

“The position of the association is a very circumscribed one which does not give all the information”, he underlined. “Currently, if we take the metro in Longueuil without any other trip, then yes, for the moment it’s $3.50. But what they don’t tell you is that if you took the train, for example, from Longueuil to Montreal, it cost $6 and if you had to use more than one means of public transport for a trip, it cost $6, $25.”

Presented Thursday morning, the second phase will eliminate 332 tickets from July 1.

From that moment, passengers coming from Montreal (zone A) and Laval (zone B) will be able to take advantage of All Modes or Bus tickets.

The first gives access to all modes of transport (bus, metro, train, REM), with prices that vary according to the number of zones required. The second offers access to almost all bus services (with some exceptions).

The first phase had already been deployed in the northern and southern crowns, i.e. zones C and D, the ARTM also recalled in a press release.

“You should know that at the base, when we arrived, there were around 700 different tickets. It’s huge, it had to be made more coherent. For Montrealers, we come out on top,” said Mayor Valérie Plante, in scrum Thursday afternoon.

In addition to the rate overhaul, the organization is simultaneously indexing the rate schedule annually, which will result in a 2% increase in rate revenue. The unit price is maintained at $3.50.

“The overhaul of public transport tariffs has been discussed for almost 40 years without success. The ARTM inherited an accumulation of 17 price lists with several competing logics and more than 750 titles. It was time to simplify and modernize the tariff offer,” said Benoît Gendron, director general of the ARTM, in a press release.

“In a period of recovery, when we invite the visit to come to Montreal, it is part of the tools. Simplified pricing is important. For Montreal, there won’t be many changes. It is especially for the suburbs that it will bring things. It will be simplified. All modes of transport will be integrated,” added Valérie Plante.

For the office of the Mayor of Longueuil, Catherine Fournier, this establishment responds to a “concern for equity” between the territories.

“In the specific case of Longueuil, the vast majority of users use both the bus and the metro to get to Montreal. Thus, for the regular user who buys a monthly title, there will be no repercussions since the monthly title is offered at an equivalent cost, ”advanced the firm.

“The advantages far outweigh the disadvantages for most users, not to mention the specific benefits for many people. Let us think, among other things, of free admission, which targets children aged 12 and under, as well as reduced rates for young people aged 6 to 17, students and those aged 65 and over,” he added.

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