Photo: François Pesant Archives The Duty
In the Greater Montreal area, the losses could reach more than $ 500 million because of the fall of the goodwill.
Quebec goes to the aid of the transport companies and grants them an emergency aid of 400 million. In Greater Montreal, where the losses could reach more than $ 500 million because of the fall in ridership, the regional Authority of metropolitan transport (ARTM) has called this announcement ” a step in the right direction.”
“This emergency financial assistance is a concrete gesture that will encourage a return to normal in terms of public transit,” said quebec’s minister of Transport, François Bonnardel in a press release Thursday. This amount is added to 614 million provided for in the québec infrastructures Plan 2020-2030 for the realization of projects of public transit.
The amount of 400 million paid in the emergency, half of which would come from the funds granted by Ottawa, says the minister Bonnardel.
The transport companies are not, however, at the end of their sentences. The pandemic has drastically reduced their income, their expenses have risen as they have maintained their services.
ARTM, which brings together companies including transport of Montréal, Laval and Longueuil, contends that, from march until the end of the month of may, the decline in traffic has resulted in losses of more than $ 165 million. For the year 2020, it is expected that a shortfall of 523 million.
The minister’s announcement Bonnardel has been praised by several organizations concerned by the fate of the transport companies. The president of Trajectory, Québec, François Pepin, estimated that the assistance provided by Québec dismisses the threat of a cut to services or a significant increase in rates. The Alliance Transit hope for his part that the funds will be forwarded promptly to the transport company. For its part, the Union of Quebec municipalities (UMQ) has taken the opportunity to remind the government that the financial impact of the pandemic for the cities in quebec that could reach $ 1.4 billion, with losses of 670 million for public transit for the whole of Québec.