Explore Two Montreal Transit Maps,
70 Years Apart

A zoomable version of two overlayed transit maps from 1941 and 2011 lets you explore the similarities and differences after 70 years of change A transit map is not just some means to help people to get around, it can tell you a lot about a city. Where do people live, where do they go, […]

Could Commuter Rail Equipment be Used for Affordable Intercity Travel?

The rail operator in France just started marketing a truly low cost high speed rail option. SNCF will soon start a new rail service under the name OuiGo (yes go! we go!), offering travel as cheap as 10 Euros for travels as far as 500 miles. This may be the cheapest HSR tickets anywhere in […]

Montreal Frequent Service Map – Update

This has been a long time coming, I’ve finally gotten around to update my Montreal Frequent Service Map. This is a map of the Montreal Metro and the whole 10-Minute Max Network. There haven’t been many changes: The 211 Lakeshore is not a 10 minute bus any more. The STM chose instead to create a […]

Everybody’s Talking about the Weather…

With the snow storm hitting the North-East, and thousands of flights cancelled, I’m reminded of this ad from 1966. It’s for the Deutsche Bahn, the rail operator in (West) Germany at the time. It says “Everybody is talking about the Weather … not us”, and at the bottom, “just rather take the train, DB”. Yes, […]

514 Buses –
get Montreal bus schedules via cell phone

Warning: I am currently transitioning this app to a new format so the schedules are not up to date (as of 2013). When I built the app, it relied on scraping the data from the STM's website, a painful process. I am now migrating to their GTFS feed, which will take some time. If you […]

The STM and the illusion of participation

The STM, Montreal's public transportation agency, presents itself as fresh and new and user-oriented, with a recently revamped corporate design (which is admittedly pretty nifty) and a public campaign involving tv spots and a new blog. They try to project an image of user focus. Just now the STM offered a new set of exciting […]

Bike Contrails

Contrails is a project to turn bicycles into a paint brush. The goal is to create a device that attaches to a bike and leaves a washable chalk like trail - a bike contrail. The Brooklyn, New York based organization behind the idea recently completed a successful kickstarter, raising ten thousand dollars. This will allow […]

Construction of the Train de l’Est begins
– at 87,000$ per commuter

Last week the AMT started the construction of the first stations of the Train de l'Est, a new commuter rail line linking the downtown of Montreal with Montreal-Nord, the east of the Island, as well as Repentigny and Mascouche off the island. The line goes through the electrified Mont-Royal Tunnel, then along a single-tracked CN […]

Breakthrough of the Longest Tunnel in the World

The longest tunnel in the world is now in Switzerland. Since 8:00 Eastern Time this morning, when a TBM broke through the walls to form the Gotthard Base Tunnel. This 57Km train tunnel, to be completed around 2017, at a cost to the tune of 1300$ for every person in Switzerland, represents this country's vision […]

Car-Shaped Bike Rack Design

This is too clever not to share. It's a concept for a bicycle rack, an entry to Designboom’s IIDA Competition. It shows bicycles reclaiming the space taken by cars. Also illustrates nicely how much parking space a car takes compared to a bike. via inhabitat

Bike Share Maps Around the World

Bicycle sharing has been spreading across the world. Velib in Paris, Bixi in Montreal, most recently Capital bike share in Washington DC, etc. etc. The newest generation of bike sharing can provide more mobility than any other form of transit for short distances in dense urban areas. You can hop on at a station, and […]

Transit ridership Higher in Canada than in US, Australia

Canadian cities get consistently higher transit ridership ratios than cities in the US or Australia, according to a recent article at Human Transit. The graph shows the percentage of people commuting to work by public transit, compared to the population of the cities. The transit share tends to be higher for larger populations -- but […]

Montreal metro cars: Bombardier wins contract, Taxpayers loose

Now it's official. Instead of trying to get the new Montreal metro cars at market value, Quebec just confirmed that the contract is directly going to be given to Bombardier. Without a bidding process. This comes just a few days after the government asked the STM to delay the opening of the bidding process, so […]

Is Montréal paying too much for BRT on Pie-IX?

According to a recent gazette article, the cost to build 15km of bus rapid transit along Pie-IX is projected to cost 305M$. This includes154M$ for 10km in Montreal, 125$M for 5km in Laval, and 26$M for unforseen expenses. The higher relative cost in Laval is due to having to modify on/off ramps, and building parking […]

Better Buses II: Building the Network

This is part II of a series on ideas how to make frequent bus services more attractive, see part I The way the STM in Montréal built their frequent network is to label some already heavily used lines, and add some service during off peak hours here and there to get an all day 10 […]

AMT Announces Rebuilding of Intermodal Station on the South-Shore, Leaves Open Which Modes These Are

More AMT news, Montreal commuter trains are on a roll. On Friday the agency announced that 19.7 $ Million, compared to the originally budgeted 6.8$ Million, will be spent to rebuild Gare Saint-Hubert into a more permanent commuter rail station. 75% will be paid by the Ministry of Transport of Quebec, the rest by the […]

Bombardier Unveils Dual Mode Locomotive to be Used by AMT and NJT

Bombardier yesterday unveiled (also here) its new dual mode locomotive at Innotrans 2010 in Berlin. It is to be used on the new Train de l'Est commuter line in Montreal, and some lines of the New Jersey Transit (NJT). They trains are purchased in a joint bid by AMT and NJT. The AMT has ordered […]

Every Day Should Be Car-Free Day

Rue Ste-Catherine in Montreal has been full of people at every occasion they are allowed on the street, including the current car-free week. Since it is a really bad street for cars, would it be a good idea to turn it into a pedestrian mall all the way? As part of "In Town Without My […]

Better Buses I: Frequent Service Does Not a Network Make

This is part I of a series on ideas how to make bus services more attractive While making a map for Montreal's frequent bus service, branded the "10 minute network", it became obvious that just taking a couple of heavily utilized bus lines and upgrading or labeling already existing all-day frequent service doesn't make a […]

A Map for Montréal’s frequent service

As mentioned in a previous post, I've been working on a frequent service map of Montreal's new réseau 10 minute max (10 minute network). Just a couple of days after the new schedule went on effect on August 30th, I am now publishing this map (under cc-by-sa-nc). The stm also published a map. But theirs […]