MISE À DAY
Montreal and Quebec were unable to lower the price of the Pie-IX Rapid Bus Service (SRB) extension, despite a new call for tenders.
The Société de transport de Montréal (STM) received in recent weeks a bid of $136 million for the construction of the Pie-IX SRB between Pierre-de-Coubertin and Notre-Dame streets, noted our Office of investigation.
This amount is one million more than the best price received last year, which was deemed too expensive by the Plante administration and the Legault government, since the budget is only $78 million.
< p>In January, the STM, the City of Montreal, the Regional Metropolitan Transport Authority (ARTM) and the Ministry of Transport announced that they were going back to calls for tenders.
All these public players then congratulated themselves on having launched a call for tenders at the “ideal” time which would make it possible to bring “within the allocated budgets” costs that kept increasing.
However, this is not at all what happened. As in many other public projects, such as the tramway and the third link in Quebec, the costs increase over time, particularly due to inflation.
General contractors Pomerleau and EBC thus offered carry out the work for $136 million and $141 million respectively.
These are the same two companies that had submitted bids last summer, during the call for tenders which was canceled for cost reasons.
Their prices were then 135 million  ;$ for EBC and $181 million for Pomerleau.
The STM did not want to say whether the costs, even higher than last year, jeopardized the project.
< p> The submissions […] are still being analyzed by all the partners of the integrated project , simply replied spokesperson Justine Lord-Dufour.
According to our information, it could take several weeks before a decision is made on the continuity of the project.
The extension of the SRB , announced in 2019 by Valérie Plante and the Legault government, was in principle to be connected to the Eastern REM project, a possibility that has since been completely called into question.
In the most recent version of the project, the train would no longer cross Rue Pie-IX near Notre-Dame.
The Pie-IX SRB, in Laval and Montreal, entered service last fall, except for Jean-Talon and Bélanger stations which are closed due to work related to the extension of the blue metro line.
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