Tramway in Gatineau: the behind-the-scenes talks heat up

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Tramway àagrave; Gatineau  /16x9/stephane-leclerc-terminus-tramway-header.png

The discussions are continuing between the City of Gatineau, the provincial government and the federal government on the tramway file (archives).

The tramway project of the Société de transport de l'Outaouais (STO) was at the heart of discussions during a meeting between the offices of the Mayor of Gatineau and that of the Minister of Transport and Sustainable Mobility of Quebec, this week.

This exchange follows an initial interview between France Bélisle and Geneviève Guilbault. The two elected officials have agreed to talk to each other again about this file before the holiday season.

Ms. Guilbault's press attaché, Louis-Julien Dufresne, also indicates that the minister is in constant contact with the deputy for Hull, Suzanne Tremblay, as well as the regional minister, Mathieu Lacombe, in this capacity.

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Another meeting is scheduled for next week, between the federal Minister of Infrastructure, Dominic LeBlanc, and his provincial counterpart in Quebec, Jonatan Julien. The two ministers are expected to discuss the tramway project in Gatineau.

The Quebec government has already committed to funding 60% of the project, while the federal government has yet to confirm its funding. This transportation project has been valued at four billion dollars.

STO President Jocelyn Blondin said he was encouraged to see breakthroughs in the file and hopes that #x27;they will allow the project to move forward further. Blondin also wants the latest developments to result in confirmation of funding from the federal government.

We see that things are progressing, it's positive, he said after the last meeting of the STO board of directors on Thursday.

“We said we were expecting an announcement after the holidays and it looks good. »

— Jocelyn Blondin, President of the STO

Last month, Gatineau Mayor France Bélisle was impatient with the slowness with which Ottawa is processing the file. Ms. Bélisle also mentioned the possibility of reviewing the project.

What we want is the funding we need to clarify the situation, launched the mayor, in an interview with Radio-Canada last week. The Quebec government said it would be there and what we need is to have the federal government on board, she concluded.

With information from Nathalie Tremblay

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