How will the REM impact transportation across the Montreal metropolitan region?

Published: 31 July 2023

As Montreal's new light rail or LRT system is set to open its first branch of service this summer, researchers at TRAM, a transportation research group at McGill University, have released an overview of how Montrealers say they plan to use (or not use) the new system, based on surveys conducted between 2019 to 2022. The surveys form a part of the multiyear project titled "Impacts of the new Réseau Express Métropolitain (REM) on mobility, health and equity: A pre-post intervention study," funded by Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Some of the key points from their recent report include:   

  • Perceptions of the REM were largely positive across the three waves, especially regarding environmental and regional benefits.  

  • Respondents’ intentions to use the REM decreased from 54% to 47% between 2019 and 2022. More than 70% of those living within walking distance (1200 m) from a station stated that they are likely to use the REM.  

  • More than 60% of the respondents intend to use the REM for leisure and going to the airport (when this branch opens), while more than a third of participants plan use the REM to commute to work.  

  • Across the three waves of data collection, women were consistently found to be less likely to use the REM than men.   

  • Perceptions regarding construction impacts remained mostly stable across the three waves, while the percentage of respondents reporting that they felt well informed about transport alternatives increased overtime.  

  • Those reporting that they were negatively impacted by construction were found to be the least likely to use the REM in the future.   

Read the full report 

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