Limited Options for a quick link

News 11 December, 2017
  • Matthew Payen

    Monday, December 11, 2017 01:00

    Monday, December 11, 2017 01:00

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    Even if Philippe Couillard has launched a great appeal to the imagination of the Québécois “, the options are limited for a high-speed link between Montreal and Quebec city, according to experts.

    The prime minister wishes to put to profit the talents of universities and schools of engineering to here to start this great project. Full of enthusiasm, Mr. Couillard spoke of his interest in the monorail at high speed, was invented in the 90’s by the physicist, quebec Pierre Couture, but is not closed to other modern technologies.

    His Transport minister, André Fortin, has also raised two weeks ago the option of the train’s futuristic Hyperloop, currently being tested in the United States.

    No TGV ?

    The only technology that Quebec rejects is the TGV (high speed train). A choice that does not include Pierre-Léo Bourbonnais, associate researcher at the chair for Mobility at Polytechnique Montréal.

    “There is not a lot of means of transport, which have been proven, in which we control the design and of which we know the impacts,” said Mr. Bourbonnais.

    For the researcher who is closely following for years, the transportation projects anywhere in the world, want to absolutely stand out is not a guarantee of success. “Developing a technology, it’s expensive and, then, it may pose a problem for maintenance if the company that created it disappears,” he says.

    Florence Paulhiac Scherrer, chair Innovations in integrated strategies for the transport-urban planning at UQAM, believes that building this high-speed link would make sense, since the bulk of the population of Quebec located between Montreal and Quebec city.

    “The choice of technology can be political with a means of transport developed here, this seems to Mr. Couillard with the monorail,” she said. For the TGV, the problem, what are the rights-of-way, since they are reserved for the freight trains. However, if it is necessary to create a second corridor, it is difficult, because it passes through agricultural land or inhabited. “

    But the professor believes, especially as the government tackles the subject upside down.

    “You talk about technology and innovation, instead of talking about the needs of the people,” she said. Before you can determine which means of transport is the better calibrated, it is necessary to ensure that there is a customer base to leverage these sophisticated technologies. “