The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal delighted
by major investments to upgrade Montreal 's subway system
Montreal, March 22, 2004 On behalf of its some 7,000 members, the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal is delighted with the announced investment of almost $310 million by the provincial and federal governments, the Société de transport de Montréal, and the Agence métropolitaine de transport for the renovation of Montreal's subway equipment.
Metropolitan Montreal's public transit infrastructures - of which the subway is a strategic element have a major impact, not only on the companies, merchants, and residents of Greater Montreal but also on the entire province, which justifies the investment by all levels of government in these infrastructures, declared Benoit Labonté, president of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal.
Montrealers, more than one third of whom regularly use public transit, enjoy a higher quality of life and a cleaner environment than those of many other large North American cities. This enviable position is largely due to the efficiency of our public transit system, which contributes to the quality of life of residents, lowers the number of vehicles on our roads, and reduces exhaust emissions, while at the same time playing a major role in economic development, added Labonté.
In fall 2003, the Board of Trade expressed its reservations about calling yet again upon metropolitan area taxpayers to finance improvements to public transit infrastructures. Already, through gasoline taxes, car registration fees, municipal taxes, and user fees, taxpayers cover more than 80 percent of public transit expenses in Greater Montreal. The Board of Trade also expressed its belief that new public transit funding sources should be found through a better distribution of the existing tax base.
The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal has some 7,000 members. Its primary mission is to represent the interests of the business community of the Greater Montreal region and, as a contributing and responsible player, to promote the economic development of the urban area. Encompassing three specialized services ( Info entreprises , the Electronic Commerce Institute and World Trade Centre Montréal ) that serve merchants and businesses of all sizes throughout Quebec and Canada , the Board of Trade is Quebec 's leading private economic development organization.
Coordinator, Media relations
Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal
Tel.: (514) 871-4000, ext. 4015