NEWS

Dorval Circle construction slow due to land negotiations

01/23/2015 09:26 EST | Updated 03/25/2015 05:59 EDT
Plans for a revamped interchange in Dorval to ease traffic and simplify access to Montreal’s Trudeau International Airport have been dragging on due to negotiations over land.

On Friday, Quebec Transport Minister Robert Poëti said the province has had a hard time reaching an agreement with Canadian Pacific Railway to build on their land.

“Seventy per cent of the project is done, but we had to deal and negotiate with the CN and the CP about the track of the train. It was difficult with CP,” Poëti said.

A plan to overhaul the Dorval Circle was announced in 2009. It included the addition of new, direct links between the airport and Highways 20 and 520.

In order to build two overpasses, the ministry counted on moving parts of the train tracks to build highway supports.

Fed up with waiting to strike a deal, Poëti said the province has come up with another plan.

“It was impossible to arrive to an agreement with the CP so what we decided is that we won’t wait anymore. We are going to pass on top of the rail instead of moving the rail.”

The new plan is to build suspension bridges — that don't touch CP land.

In a statement, CP would only say that “regular meetings have been taking place between CP and the Transport Ministry. These talks are collaborative."

Dorval Mayor Edgar Rouleau says he’s frustrated by the delays, and residents are embarrassed by how long the work is taking.

“"I think it's absolutely insane,” agreed Peter Hansen, who drives past the Dorval Circle to get downtown regularly.

Poëti said now that the plans can move forward, the delays will be over.

“We are going to make the project on time and on budget,” he said, adding it is slated to be finished in 2017.

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