Roger-Luc Chayer

Something terrible happened for the City of Montreal on Sunday, June 3rd and it was called The Island Tour! Hundreds of thousands of Montrealers found themselves captives, hostages at home, and this, through the fault of the city that persists, year after year, complaints after complaint, to maintain an event that is causing great harm to Montrealers, not to mention the inequity caused by the Tour de l’Île or the Montreal Marathon.

The first victims are the motorists who suffer a terrible iniquity by not being able to move freely on the roads of Montreal and who are taken hostage. However, car owners pay a registration, the tax for public transport, a driver’s license and insurance while those who rob them of their right to drive do not pay anything. In other words, cyclists do not contribute in any way to the roads they block for their cause.

Their main argument is that they can take control one day a year while motorists have control over the other 364 days. False! This argument of the ’80s is no longer valid because today, in Montreal, there are hundreds of kilometers of trails and bike lanes that allow cyclists to go almost anywhere. The width of most streets has been sacrificed to build protected trails or protected lanes, and even regulations have been changed to better protect cyclists, such as doubling the distance between the vehicle and the bike. more than one meter and even prohibit doubling a bike if the street is narrow. As far as the safety of cyclists is concerned, these are excellent measures. Now, these sacrifices on the width of the streets and on the doubling have

been made by motorists. It has encroached on the road of motorists who pay to circulate to provide space for cyclists who pay nothing. And let us not forget that motorists and other motor vehicle drivers make a large contribution to the state budget with gas taxes.

On June 3, the Tour de l’Île hurt Montreal. As in the days of Coderre, which condemned streets and entire boulevards to rebuild the basement of the city, the bicycle tour has stifled thousands of businesses. As for the argument put forward by cyclists who say that they, at least, do not pollute, it is also wrong! All these stuck cars whose engines run without advancing for hours, these diesel trucks, these buses supposed to be an ecological solution, I bet the pollution was worse this Sunday than usual.

To supposedly improve the traffic, the Police Department of the City of Montreal (SPVM) had announced a few days before the event that a partnership had been made between the organizers of the tour and the Waze circulation application which was supposed to , be up to date on journeys. However, when arriving at a police roadblock on Crémazie Street East, which should not be there and blocking thousands of cars at the corner Pie-IX, the police on the spot, when informed that Waze indicated this way, that the update should be done, his answer was « I do not care about Waze, you will not pass ». Informed that it was the police who recommended Waze and in front of the anger of dozens of drivers coming out of their vehicles to talk to her, she apologized for the tone used. It’s not too late to make things better for other summer events, at work Madame Plante!