The Temptation to Continue by Car
“When you know that a motorist who parks 1.5 km further, at the Brossard-Panama parking lot, pays $57.75 compared to $77.50 at Brossard-Chevrier, it is very tempting to simply drive all the way to Montreal, thereby increasing the flow of some 18,000 vehicles which cross the Champlain Bridge during the morning rush hour by close to 10%.
This purely administrative decision made by the AMT is an irresponsible action in view of the concerted efforts to free up access to Montreal,” stated Louis Alexander, Interim President of the Syndicat des chauffeurs d’autobus de la STRSM (Local 3333 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees CUPE-QFL).
No Road-Worthy Arguments
“The arguments brought forward by the AMT to justify this increase are invalid. The AMT claims that 70% of the Brossard-Chevrier users come from outside the STRSM territory. But it would be wise to remember that this parking lot is, situated, in the STRSM territory.
“It’s rather like telling a resident of Longueuil who wants to take the metro to Montreal that his ticket will cost more than one purchased by a Montreal resident, just because he comes from outside the territory. This is a ridiculous approach,” added Mr. Alexander.
An Unacceptable and Discriminatory Practice
“This increase of $237 per year is certainly unacceptable and discriminatory for the residents of the suburban belt who are making the effort to take the STRSM network to travel to Montreal via the reserved lane on the Champlain Bridge.
“But it is twice as unacceptable for the 30% of the residents of the STRSM territory who will be penalized by the simple fact they have chosen a parking lot which is nevertheless located in their own territory. We are going to strongly encourage these residents to take legal action against the AMT to bring an end to this discriminatory practice which is clearly contrary to all the campaigns designed to encourage the use of public transport,” said CUPE representative Michel Bibeault.
Alternate Routes to Circumvent the AMT’s Decision
“We also intend to inform the Brossard-Chevrier users how to circumvent the AMT’s decision by distributing a document, as we are doing this morning, outlining alternate routes to allow them to avoid the increase decreed by the AMT.
“These users can go to the Brossard-Panama parking lot, or even park at Brossard-Chevrier and take the STRSM routes 106, 142, 42 or 36 for which they will pay only $57.75 per month. We are also going to provide them with an address where they can forward their complaints to the AMT,” explained Louis Alexander.
No to the AMT’s Double-Talk!
“We will not tolerate the AMT’s contradictory double-talk which, on one hand, calls for freeing up access to the downtown area by promoting suburban trains and reserved lanes and, on the other hand, appears to be an administrative and accounting exercise with its only goal to fill the coffers at the expense of a specific category of users,” concluded Mr. Alexander.
SOURCE : CANADIAN UNION OF PUBLIC EMPLOYEES (QFL)