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Canadian Prime Minister to invest C$1.28b toward transit project

by Andrea Waitrovich

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Thursday that the Ottawa government has pledged C$1.28 billion ($970 million) toward the Réseau électrique métropolitain (REM) light rail network in Montréal.

The funds will come in the form of a grant via Ottawa’s infrastructure-funding agreement with Quebec, Trudeau said.

Trudeau made the REM announcement along with Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard, Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre and Michael Sabia, the head of the Caisse de Depot.

The Quebec government and the Caisse de depot pension fund are also contributing to the C$6 billion ($4.5 billion) project. Quebec has already committed approximately C$1.283 billion ($970 million) to the project.

In January 2015, Quebec and the Caisse announced the agreement to build the electric light-rail network.

Officials estimate the REM would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 35,000 tonnes within its first year of operations.

The REM line would cover 67 kilometres (42 miles) and link the West Island, Trudeau Airport, the South Shore, and take over the existing Deux-Montagnes train line and part of the Mascouche railway.

Construction on the REM is planned to begin this summer, with service starting in 2020.

 

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