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  Here are a couple of suggestions to reduce the regular use of cars :

  • ride-sharing (aka carpooling) : ride-sharing reduces the number of cars on the road and, at the same time, makes for a lighter rush hour traffic. Ride-sharing moves a greater number of people without increasing you car's gas consumption. You can also ask for a reasonable compensation from your passengers, for the gas used and the wear-and-tear on your car.

  • public transit : public transit (buses, metro, commuter trains) are a type of mass ride-sharing. It's an efficient means of transportation and gives a certain freedom since you don't have to drag your car everywhere you go and there's no parking problem. If you insist on using your car, use it half-way to a parking lot near the Namur métro station (close to Blue Bonnets, aka Hippodrome de Montréal) or Longueuil station; the Radisson station parking lot is suppose to re-open soon. For more information, visit the excellent site of the MTC.

  • the modal cocktail : the modal cocktail is an idea from the Ministère des transports du Québec and later used by Vélo Québec and the Bureau de taxi de la Communauté Urbaine de Montréal. It consists of a mix of different types of transportation : public transit, taxi and car rental. You can modify the ingredients, add a bicycle or ride-sharing for example. The annual composition of the cocktail is as follows : eleven MUCTC public transit bus passes, five taxi rides a week, one car rental each weekend one month-long car rental once a year (for your vacations). All this costs, on average, between $2000 and $3000 dollars less than using a car for the same year!

  • rental CO-OPs (community cars) : the "community cars" are cars that are shared by a number of people in your neighbourhood or district. You only pay a fixed monthly amount to the rental management CO-OP (the cars are maintained by the CO-OP). Communauto in Montreal is one example of a CO-OP that offers this service (tel.: (514) 842-4545).

  • bicycles : bicycles are a non-polluting means of transportation and a good exercise. The island of Montreal has one of the most extensive bike path network in north america (altough some of the paths are more "touristy"). There are two great Montreal web sites that have great content on bicycle use as transportation : the Monde @ Bicyclette site (also contains information on urban sprawl and car use reduction) and the Vélo-Québec site.

  • walking : the oldest, cheapest and least polluting means of transportation. Of course, it implies that you live or can live near your workplace and that the neighbourhood that you live in has all the basic services within walking distance. So, instead of using your car for shopping, why not take a walk to your local stores.


 

 

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