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Governments investing in Montreal’s underwater highway tunnel

Together the Canadian and Quebec governments will invest over half a billion dollars to rehabilitate the Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine Tunnel.


The governments of Canada and Quebec will invest in a major rehabilitation of the Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine Tunnel in order to maintain and modernize the longest underwater highway tunnel in Canada.

The tunnel is a vitally important transportation infrastructure for the Greater Montreal area. The work will result in the rehabilitation of this infrastructure, increased safety for users, and the modernization of operating systems, such as lighting, electrical systems and fire protection systems.

The project also includes the complete reconstruction of the Highway 25 roadway between Charron Island and the Sherbrooke interchange, as well as the construction of infrastructure for public transit along highways 20 and 25.

As a strategic road link for the Montreal region, as well as for Quebec and Canada, for both the transportation of people and goods, this major infrastructure will be preserved for at least 40 years.

The Canada and Quebec governments will together invest over half a billion.

Because the large-scale project to rehabilitate the Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine Tunnel is subject to the Government of Quebec’s Directive sur la gestion des projets majeurs d’infrastructure publique (directive on managing major public infrastructure projects) and currently in the call-for-proposals process, the overall cost of the project as well as the amount of funding from the governments will be known following approval of the business case.

“The Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine Tunnel is a vital link between the Island of Montreal and the South Shore,” said Chantal Rouleau, Minister for Transport and Minister responsible for the Metropolis and the Montreal Region in a media release. “I am therefore pleased that the Government of Canada is providing financial support for this major rehabilitation project, which will ensure that this infrastructure, one of our most important in Quebec and even in the rest of Canada, is maintained. In addition, the implementation of major public transit mitigation measures, including several that will be maintained after the work is completed, will provide the public with alternative travel options.”

The Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine Tunnel, built in 1967, is the longest underwater tunnel in Canada and is used by some 120,000 vehicles per day, 13% of them trucks. The work will begin in the spring of 2020, and is expected to take four years to complete.

Among the mitigation measures set out in the contract, the principal one is the implementation of bus preferential measures amounting to 25 km of reserved lanes, the provision of 850 park-and-ride spots, and the construction of new bus platforms.