LOCATION: LAC-MÉGANTIC and municipalities of FRONTENAC AND NANTES
Issue: Lac-mégantic rail Bypass update
Date: FEBRUARY 11, 2021
- In May 2018, the governments of Canada and Quebec announced their commitment to build the Lac-Mégantic Rail Bypass Project.
- Since then, significant progress has been made.
- In August 2019, following the completion of an engineering study, the governments announced the relocation of railway activities to the Lac-Mégantic industrial park, responding to community requests.
- Following public consultation hearings during summer 2019, the provincial environmental assessment process was completed in September 2020. An agreement was reached amongst partners to include 138 mitigation measures to the project.
- The City of Lac-Mégantic also confirmed the completion of a 2-year Feasibility Study, which included detailed technical works.
- Transport Canada continues to work in collaboration with the Canadian Pacific Railway and other partners involved to implement this important social reconstruction project.
- The land acquisition process is well advanced. The evaluation of properties were completed during the past year and offers should be made to landowners in the next few months.
- Transport Canada is working in collaboration with the Canadian Pacific Railway to move forward with this project and still expects the bypass to be in service in 2023.
- On May 11, 2018, the Prime Minister of Canada, together with the Premier of Quebec, announced the rail bypass in Lac-Mégantic. The project, which is estimated to cost $133 million, will be funded by the federal government (60%) and the Province (40%). In December 2019, Canadian Pacific Railway bought the Central Maine & Quebec Railway, and have indicated publicly they will continue to support the project.
- The feasibility study conducted by the municipality of Lac-Mégantic was completed with the submission of the final report by the engineering firm AECOM in September 2020. This report was transmitted to the Canadian Pacific Railway for review to ensure that the proposed design meets its operating methods. Once this work has been completed, the plans and specifications phase can be launched.
- The environmental assessment process led by the Ministère de l'Environnement et de la Lutte aux changements climatiques is now completed. The various departments and agencies grouped together 138 mitigation measures that will be integrated into the project, including the environmental follow-ups that will be carried out. These measures will be implemented in order to minimize as much as possible the impacts of this project on the community and its environment.
Relocation of rail storage activities
- Transport Canada has retained the services of the engineering firm RIVVAL to assess the feasibility options of consolidating the railway activities at the industrial park. Based on this report, Transport Canada made an announcement that is supported by the rail operator, the municipalities and the communities.