Drivers getting used to St. John's reserved lane: police

Marc Lalonde
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Yes, kids count when skipping traffic snarl. No, being pregnant doesn't count for two

The Montreal Transit Corp. expects to see an increase in ridership aboard buses that use the new reserved bus lane on St. John's Boulevard. Running south in the mornings and north in the evenings.

After two months of getting accustomed to the new reserved bus , taxi and carpool lane on St. John's Boulevard, few tickets have been handed out, and even fewer complaints have come from the public, said one local mayor.

The lane, which runs south from Pierrefonds Boulevard to Brunswick Boulevard in Pointe Claire daily from 6:30 to 10 a.m. and north from 3:30 to 7 p.m. in the evening, has not yet roused great antipathy among drivers, despite daily traffic jams that see traffic snarled as far south as de Salaberry Boulevard at the height of the evening rush hour, reports Dollard des Ormeaux mayor Ed Janiszewski.

"We really haven't gotten that many complaints about it," said Janiszewski. "I've personally only gotten one complaint, but the reality is that not much has changed all that much. The big issue is people waiting to turn have to wait behind buses stopping at the intersections, so that's an issue, but it seems for the most part, people have gotten used to it," he said.

It appears as though having signs up throughout the summer has accustomed drivers to the new reality of commuting on St. John's Boulevard, said Const. Dan Maheu of Montreal police Station 3.

"It's going very well," said the community-relations agent. "It hasn't been avalanche of tickets so far. It's going very well," he said.

Maheu said he has received many questions about the rules for carpooling in the lane. Yes, children count. No, being pregnant does not actually count as a second person.

"If the woman is pregnant, no, it doesn't count," he said, laughing. Maheu estimates about 100 tickets have been given since the beginning of September, and just 10 since the beginning of October.

"People are respecting the signage," he said.

Montreal Transit Corp. spokesman Marianne Rouette said there have been no formal studies done to indicate whether or not ridership has increased on STM buses since the new lane was installed, but Rouette said the agency "does expect to see an increase," in people riding the buses served by the lane.

Organizations: Montreal Transit

Geographic location: St. John's Boulevard, Pierrefonds Boulevard, Brunswick Boulevard Pointe Claire De Salaberry Boulevard Montreal

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