Montreal's municipal council yesterday adopted the proposed $4.3 billion budget which sees a huge increase in the amount alloted for public transit. While there'll be more buses on the roads, their drivers will likely have to be extra attentive in dodging the craters that will continue dotting our fair metropolis.
The budget for road repairs was slashed in excess of 30% for the coming year, ensuring the longevity and profitability of service stations and repair shops across the island. It's currently gotten so bad that old streetcar rails are starting to be exposed. Perhaps this is all part of a master plan to get a new tram system installed on the cheap, but motorists will be paying the price in dings, dents and new shock absorbers.
Other road related goodies in the budget included a new tax on all parking lots located within the fixed-fare taxi airport zone bordered by Atwater in the west, Papineau in the east, the Lachine canal in the south and Pine Ave. in the north. This tax is expected to make up for shortfalls in other areas, but has the downtown business community concerned it will further drive shoppers away.