High Speed Monorail Montreal to Quebec City Faded Dreams


 There has been 65 years worth of studies and there still is no monorail in Canada operating as part of public transit system. 

trens quebec high speed monorail
TrensQuébec High Speed Monorail Conceptual Design


Montreal to Quebec City High Speed Monorail Proposal - 2008 - Present


Quebec physicist Dr. Pierre Couture spent most of his career working at Hydro-Québec, Between 1982 and 1995, working with a small budget, the team developed an electric-powered motor-wheel.

Mr. Couture had developed a high speed rail suspended monorail based on this technology. A group formed with Jean-Pierre Marchand, director TrensQuébec, and Pierre Langlois, physicist and specialist in sustainable mobility to promote this technology. 

The idea was to run a high speed suspended monorail from Montreal to Quebec-City and other locations. It could run at 250 km/h.




The proposal got a boost when, at the Liberal Party convention in November 2017, Premier Philippe Couillard launched the idea of ​​developing "a modern, sustainable, futuristic link" between the two largest cities in the province, thereby opening the door to the monorail.

The proposal faced opposition for a few reason.
  1. The technology for monorails travelling at 250 km/h currently did not exist.
  2. There were no monorail systems anywhere in the world that that big .(225 km in length between the two cities) 
  3. VIA Rail was purposing a high frequency slow train alternative to travel on existing tracks that was cheaper than high speed rail.
In 2012, a supportive organization "Solidarity Cooperative of the High Speed Monorail" (Coop MGV) was formed In 2013 the organized obtained its incorporation status as a coop.

Premier Philippe Couillard backed down from supporting the monorail idea and lost the next election.

Though a confidential Transport Canada document was leaked in July 2019 outlining the financial shortcomings of the Montreal-Quebec City VIA Rail high frequency rail project, the high speed rail monorail project seemed unable to capitalize on this news.

In 2020, the TrensQuébec website had not been updated since December 2017 and very little media of any kind is coming from the organization. The Coop MGV website and social media is current but it seems the idea of a high speed monorail has hit a wall.


Paul Langan, is the President of High Speed Rail Canada. In September, 2020 his book "Forgotten Monorails of Canada" will be released. This article is an excerpt from it.

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