Sunday, June 5, 2011

Tour de Ile Biking all over the Island of Montreal 30,000 that's a lot of bikes

               MONTREAL - Motorists and surface-transit users face widespread navigational challenges Sunday to accommodate the largest and final event of this year’s Montreal Bike Fest – the Tour de l’Île. Beginning at 9:15 a.m., about 30,000 cyclists are to start departing northbound from Park Ave. at Mount Royal Ave.

Their wide-ranging, 52-kilometre excursion will return them to the same place.

Streets along the full route will be shut to other traffic, on a staggered basis.

A dozen bus routes have been cancelled for much of the day. Routes taken by another 38 bus lines have been altered during the event. Park between Pine Ave. and Mount Royal will be shut to regular vehicle traffic as Sunday begins, at midnight. It will be the last to reopen, at 6 p.m.

The lengthy list of other road closings – beginning at 6:30 a.m. along the route’s first leg – is posted on the Vélo Québec website. Staff there will also be available to provide closure information by phone, organizers said.

On the earlier legs of the route, road closings will be limited to about four hours.

But they’ll prove considerably longer toward the tail end of the route.

For instance, Berri St., from St. Catherine St. to Roy St., will be shut at 9:50 a.m. and reopen to regular traffic at 4:45 p.m.

The Société de transport de Montréal said the following bus routes will be cancelled for substantial portions of the day: 15 (Ste. Catherine), 37 (Jolicoeur), 51 (édouard-Montpetit), 61 (Wellington), 78 (Laurendeau), 92 (Jean-Talon W.), 102 (Somerled), 119 (Rockland), 150 (René-Lévesque), 160 (Barclay), 161 (Van Horne) and 515 (Old Montreal/Old Port.)

Some lines won’t resume until 4:45 p.m.

Specific road closings and times are listed at Click for English at top right and click on Tour de l’Île, then on Info-Circulation on the left. Staff at (514) 521-8356 will be on hand to answer questions Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Sunday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Public-transit users can call AUTOBUS – 514-288-6287 – for bus schedules at their stop, as well as detour information.

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