11.May – LAC-MÉGANTIC, QC – Today, Canada’s Minister of Transport, the Honorable Omar Alghabra, and the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport, Soraya Martinez Ferrara, announced that the Government of Canada intends to complete the rail bypass project around downtown Lac–Mégantic in 2023.
A press release indicates that a number of milestones have been reached in recent months, which have allowed us to move the project forward, despite many challenges, including those posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
To relocate railway operations to the Lac-Mégantic industrial park, as announced in 2019, additional engineering work had to be done. This allowed delivered a final route that residents and the mayors of Lac–Mégantic, Nantes and Frontenac had wanted.
The Government of Canada and the rail operator, Canadian Pacific Railway, will start preparing plans and specifications in the coming weeks. Negotiations to acquire the lands will soon begin with the impacted property owners. A virtual information session will be held with them in the near future to answer their questions.
The construction phase is expected to begin in spring 2022 as the government agency is working with Canadian Pacific Railway to establish a schedule that will allow the project to be finished in 2023.
This reconstruction project will continue to be a priority for the Government of Canada until the project is successfully completed.
- On May 11, 2018, the Canadian and Quebec governments announced joint funding for the construction of the Lac-Mégantic rail bypass. The choice of the final route is based on a number of studies conducted as part of the feasibility study supervised by the City of Lac-Mégantic
- The federal government will provide 60% of the funding, and the Quebec government will provide the other 40%.
- Consultations with Indigenous peoples are going well. Transport Canada is working with the Waban-Aki First Nation and the Huron–Wendat First Nation, who, during the consultations, expressed their interest in participating in the archaeological studies.
- Transport Canada is working with the Ministère des Transports du Québec and other partners to integrate into the project, the environmental measures specified by the Bureau d’audiences publiques sur l’environnement, and those identified in the project’s environmental assessment.