Montreal city hall recently announced that next year the city will host a Formula E race. This class of racing features electric cars, hence the E, and will be run on a road course instead of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. The city has earmarked several million dollars for repairs to the roads that will be used, but the actual route is a deep dark secret. Regardless, much-needed improvements to Montreal roads is never a bad thing. Then again …
On a trip to a medical appointment earlier this week the thought came to my mind that what I was experiencing was nothing short of cruel yet sadly not unusual. Like an excerpt from a Kafka book, there seemed no way out. Like a guy struggling in quicksand in an old western movie, each step plunges you deeper instead of providing an escape.
I’m referring to Montreal’s ”system” of detours. As I understand it, a detour is a marked route used to move traffic around a work site or road closure. It is intended to provide ease of movement. So let me put this as succinctly as I can: a detour that sends motorists to an alternate route that is also restricted by construction is not a detour, it’s diabolical.
But that is precisely what happens on many occasions due to the large number of work sites, they infringe upon possible alternative routes. I understand that even with our less cold global warming altered winters most road work must be done during the summer. But is there no planning to ease the gridlock? I wonder if somewhere there is a group of traffic planners laughing heartily as they watch video screens showing irate drivers as they come to understand that they have been detoured right into yet another construction site, complete with its own set of detours.