REM technology “does not belong” to the Caisse, says Quebec

(Quebec) The government and the City of Montreal could “take over the technology” of the REM for their project in the East, because it “does not belong” to the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), argues the minister Transport delegate, Chantal Rouleau. It specifies that the government will acquire the same exceptional powers that it had granted to the CDPQ to accelerate the construction of the REM de l’Est 2.0, particularly with regard to expropriation.

Posted at 1:13 p.m.

Tommy Chouinard

Tommy Chouinard
The Press

Wednesday, during the study of the budgetary appropriations of the metropolis, of which Mme Rouleau has the responsibility, the opposition parties have tried to obtain details on the new version of the REM de l’Est which is piloted by the government and the City and from which the CDPQ is excluded.

“We can still talk about a project around 10 billion,” replied the minister, recalling that a working group has the mandate to define the exact route and give details on the new infrastructure. She pointed out that “discussions have already started with the federal government” to obtain a financial contribution from her.

According to her, the government and the City could use REM technology, that is to say an electric and automated train. “The technology does not belong to CDPQ Infra. We can take it back,” she argued, while saying that the decision is not made on the “appropriate technology” for the new version of the project.

On Tuesday, CDPQ CEO Charles Emond did not speak directly about the technology, but he argued that the project cannot be called the REM de l’Est because it is a registered trademark. .

Chantal Rouleau said she “would like” the schedule to be “in the same waters” as what was planned, namely a commissioning in 2029, but she did not give a guarantee.

She argued that the government “is not starting from scratch” since it will get its hands on the studies carried out so far by CDPQ Infra, to which it will have to pay nearly 100 million dollars.

The delays may be longer, because the government wants an extension to Laval and Lanaudière. In Quebec, there is talk of a two-phase project.

The member for Québec solidaire, Alexandre Leduc, asked the minister if the government intends to acquire special powers in matters of expropriation to carry out the project, like those it had given to the CDPQ. Chantal Rouleau answered in the affirmative. “We will make sure to have the same tools, the same means that had been allocated to the Caisse de depot to move this project forward,” she replied. We will do what it takes to make it happen. »

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