A 3rd link with two tubes to reduce costs

The revised version of the third link between Quebec and Lévis will include two tubes instead of a single, single and gigantic tube, which involved designing the largest tunnel boring machine in the world.

• Read also: New version of the third link: Lehouillier satisfied, Merchant very discreet

• Read also: 3rd link: the CAQ opts for a more modest tunnel

By betting on a twin-tube concept, the Legault government hopes to reduce the scale of the bill which, according to the project presented in May 2021, amounted to between 7 and 10 billion dollars.

The CAQ then proposed to dig a huge two-storey monotube 19.4 meters in diameter under the St. Lawrence River, over a distance of 8.3 kilometers.

This version came with its share of challenges in terms of engineering and construction, which partly explained the very high cost of the project.

Fewer lanes

According to information confirmed by our Parliamentary Office, we would find, in the “adjusted” version of the project, which will be unveiled this Thursday, at least two lanes in each tube, the diameter of which would be smaller. As Le Journal reported on Saturday, Quebec would use dynamic lane management to manage traffic during peak hours. It remains to be seen which lanes will be reserved for public transit and when.

The location of the tunnel should not change: it would still be a question of connecting downtown Quebec to that of Lévis, where preparatory work will begin in the coming months.

The Minister of Transport, François Bonnardel, must also announce whether the ramp of the tunnel which was to lead into the Saint-Roch district (to allow buses to exit near the Fleurie island, then motorists to join the Dufferin-Montmorency highway ) will be retained, or simply eliminated.

Satisfied Lehouillier, Discreet Merchant

At the end of a meeting with Minister Bonnardel on the new version of the project on Tuesday, the mayors of Quebec and Lévis were relatively discreet even if Gilles Lehouillier did not hide his satisfaction.

Assuring that he “liked this [qu’il] saw,” Mr. Lehouillier confirmed that there will “definitely” be room for public transit within the megaproject with a view to “bringing the two city centers together in 10-15 minutes.”

The latter has confirmed that he will be present at the government announcement scheduled for Thursday afternoon and which, according to our information, could take place in Lévis.

Less voluble, the mayor of Quebec Bruno Marchand did not want to say if his opinion on the third link has evolved since he learned of the new version, nor to specify if he will be present on Thursday.

– With Taïeb Moalla, Le Journal de Québec

What they said after learning about the new concept:

“We were presented with an interesting project. We will leave it to the government to announce it. The only thing I can confirm is that there will be a tunnel between the two banks. »

  • Mayor of Lévis, Gilles Lehouillier

“The delicacy is to let the minister present what he is working on (…) My goal is to respect the minister. »

  • The Mayor of Quebec, Bruno Marchand


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