Westmounters: Make BMW
mean Bus, Metro, Walk!

In Westmount you’re never far from a bus or metro stop

By Tony Moffat

Previously published on January 4, 2020

With downtown only 5 km away from Westmount on average, it seems close enough. However, who takes the 40 minutes to walk this every workday? While an ever-growing number cycle it in 5-10 minutes each way and some take public transportation, I suspect that the vast majority still use their personal cars.

Such mileage can add up, with both financial and environmental consequences. For the 200 working days in the year, that daily commute by private car makes a total of 2000 km, corresponding to just over a half metric ton of CO2 for an average car at a cost just for gasoline of about $300; the actual cost is about triple that (i.e. just under $1000), allowing for maintenance and depreciation – but not allowing for the considerable damage done to the environment, which can be many factors worse.

You can use an Opus card any time and go anywhere any number of times in Montreal! And by doing so you will considerably reduce your carbon footprint…

The cost of a monthly Opus card pass with the STM is $86.50, so $1038 per year. This is similar to the basic cost of a car, but just for one return car trip downtown on workdays. You can use an Opus card any time and go anywhere any number of times in Montreal! And by doing so you will considerably reduce your carbon footprint (even more once electric buses become the norm, like the Metro), plus enjoy having someone else drive you while you relax and read or daydream, stress-free and without the hassle of maybe having to deal with an accident. It may take you a little longer but think of the exercise you’ll get while minimizing your impact on the environment.

And you’re never very far away on foot from public transport in Westmount – see accompanying map, which shows the principal bus routes and nearby Metro stations. Plus you can easily find out to the nearest minute when buses pass at any stop, either on-line with a computer or a smartphone. It takes me 5 minutes to walk to or from my nearest bus stop in upper Westmount and sometimes I even take the 12 minutes to walk to Queen Mary to catch bus 51.

bus metro map Westmount -

Click image to access the complete STM system map

There’s no good excuse anymore to drive. Use active transportation: Anywhere in Westmount, you’re never far from a bus or Metro stop.

Feature image: Calvin411 [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia CommonsBouton S'inscrire à l'infolettre – WestmountMag.caRead also: other articles on the environment

Dr. Tony Moffat

Anthony (Tony) F. J. Moffat
Emeritus professor of astronomy & astrophysics in the Département de physique at the Université de Montréal, Dr. Moffat was appointed Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2001. His interests focus on massive stars (helium-burning Wolf-Rayet stars in particular), stellar winds, binary stars, as well as the structure and dynamics of our own Galaxy.

There are 5 comments

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  1. Janet Boeckh

    Great article, Tony! Good time for all of us to be reminded that we can reduce our carbon footprint at the same time that we can get some exercise.
    Happy BMW’ing. We’re in Vancouver, on our way to New Zealand where we hope to do some treks and bike rides, in addition to taking trains and buses.
    One of my favourite weekend activities is to walk with a friend up to the top of the Westmount “mountain”, and with many ways to get there, it’s a fun way to visit, explore and puff a little,
    Janet Boeckh

  2. Patricia Dumais

    So true, it really is easy to hop on a bus or Metro in Westmount – we are served by multiple bus lines and three Metro stations. The STM site allows you to plan your trip, suggesting different routes and modes of transportation: bus, Metro or train. As a frequent user of the service I can attest that it is generally very dependable.

    So Westmounters, save time, money and frustration while doing your part to reduce carbon emissions – take the bus and Metro!

  3. Tony Moffat

    Thanks for your support, Janet! Too bad you can’t get to NZ by Metro, though. But luckily your clever husband will be able to help you calculate the number of trees you need to plant when you return! Safe trip; enjoy and see you soon…

  4. Caroline Jondahl

    Dr Moffat,

    Exhorting Westmount citizens to favour public transportation in lieu of their private vehicles is laudable…however, one must take a realistic and perhaps ‘gentler’ approach. Why? Because the unadulterated fact is that Westmount is not Rosemont or Mile End where, arguably, people are more likely to be persuaded that the ‘common good’ has more weight than maintaining a thriftier…and considerably less onerous one considering the impact on the environment. This is not to suggest that many Westmounters are not mindful, some exceedingly so. Many, however, are not, especially if we consider issues such as Waste Disposal and the alarming decrease in the tonnage – compared to previous decades and other communities in Greater Montreal. Vehicle dependency is rather high in our community, and as a keen observer, there is often little adherence to the legislated time that engines can be on – all too often in violation of legislation (unenforced given our current system.). What we should ask is this: in view of the reality of the undeniable climate crisis – with the damaging Carbon Emissions, citizens compromise for the good of the planet. Take a pledge, each one of us, rely (much) less on private vehicles and (much) on alternatives…carpools, students walking to their respective schools, adults to the gym/exercise workout…BMW !!!

    Ordinary Citizen, but Woman Warrior ????

  5. Tony Moffat

    Thanks, Caroline. But perhaps this distinction of Westmount makes it all the more necessary to write such articles to promote reduced vehicle dependency!
    … working together, Tony

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