Launch of P$ Montréal Centre-Ville to actively facilitate mobility for Montrealers

Montréal, Québec, September 30, 2020 – The Agence de mobilité durable (the "Agency") and the City of Montréal today announced the launch and access to the general public of the new P$ Montréal Centre-Ville mobile tool, which now allows downtown motorists and visitors to easily access several private parking lots in the area near Sainte-Catherine Street, while benefiting from the same rate as on-street parking, in some of them.

Announced last July, during the recruitment for the test phase, and mainly developed as an additional parking solution as part of the redevelopment works of Sainte-Catherine Street, P$ Montréal Centre-Ville becomes more relevant, in the extraordinary health situation context we are all experiencing, as a lever to facilitate mobility near downtown businesses, a priority for both the Montreal Administration and the Agency.

New Features

The app, now available for smartphones on download platforms, identifies and geolocates on a map several private parking lots near Sainte-Catherine Street, guiding motorists more easily.

In addition, to take greater advantage of the existing parking offer in downtown private parking lots, users can now benefit from the same rates as on-street parking on Saint-Catherine Street West in several nearby indoor garages managed by Indigo Park Canada, the project's first partner. Users will automatically benefit from the discounted rate for two hours - between 11 a.m. and 9 p.m., every day of the week - without any further action on their part, simply by showing up at one of the participating parking lots:

  • Place Montréal Trust - 1500 McGill College Ave.
  • 1250 René-Lévesque – 1250 René-Lévesque Blvd West
  • Tour KPMG - 600 de Maisonneuve Blvd West

In total, the agreement will provide discounted parking for some 500 parking spaces.

The Agency is pleased to share that several potential partners, private parking owners, have also shown interest in participating in the project and that discussions are currently underway: new alternatives to finding parking in downtown Montreal may be available in the coming weeks, further enhancing the available parking offer.

It should be noted that following a recent survey[1] conducted by the Business Development Corporation (SDC) Montréal centre-ville, one of the major improvements desired by the majority of merchants (54%) is greater street accessibility to motorists, whether by making it easier to park or drive.

"Thanks to the new built-in features, P$ Montréal Centre-Ville also responds directly to this expectation expressed recently by Sainte-Catherine Street merchants. By taking advantage of the offer of the various existing parking lots, users and visitors to the city centre will have, by reducing the time to find a parking space, greater ease to get around and park: several private parking lots located near Sainte- Catherine Street, participating in the pilot project or not, are now identified, geolocated on a map and easily accessible through the application," said Mr. Laurent Chevrot, Managing Director of the Agency. "In addition, we are encouraged by the interest generated by this project! There is a very real need on the part of motorists, merchants and private parking owners, and we see this as a big part of the answer.”

"Improving the downtown visitor experience when choosing to drive there includes easier access to all available parking," said Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante. “I invite Montrealers to take advantage of this new app to encourage downtown merchants and show their support during this difficult time."

"Parking management is a key part of the mobility offer. Around Saint-Catherine Street West alone, there are currently 12,500 off-street parking spaces in the area. Depending on the time and day of the week, these spaces are used on average at 70%. With the launch of this application, accessibility is made easier. It is through such initiatives that more spaces can be made for all users of the network," said Mr. Éric Alan Caldwell, Head of Urban Planning and Mobility on the City of Montreal's Executive Committee.

What’s New with P$ Montréal Centre-Ville

Thanks to the new features of P$ Montréal Centre-Ville, the user can:

  • Connect with the same login information as P$ Mobile Service (both applications will continue to live in parallel for the duration of the pilot);
  • View the Agency and its partner‘ parking offer, its location on a map and the applicable rates by sector;
  • Plan their trips;
  • Use the navigation tool to get to your destination;
  • Take advantage of the on-street parking pricing in participating lots/garages (between 11 A.M. and 9 P.M.).

A Look Back at a Test Phase that Sparked User Enthusiasm

Initially, the test phase, launched in July, lasted just over a month. Following an invitation sent to current users of the P$ Mobile Service app and to all motorists and citizens who would have like to test the application before its official launch, the response was beyond the Agency's expectations: some 5,800 users signed up to be testers. Of these, more than 1,500 were given access to the app to test it, generating an equivalent number of downloads and more than 2,000 transactions made, which helped to improve and stabilize the application.

The app is now available to everyone and the Agency invites Montrealers to download it now, either in the Apple Store or via Google Play.

Following the pilot project, which will continue at least until the end of the year, these features will be integrated into the P$ Mobile Service app, which Montrealers are familiar with. It  will then be redeployed and made available to all users in an improved version. The Agency has partnered with Passport Labs Inc. to create and power the application.

About the Agence de mobilité durable

A paramunicipal organization, the Agence de mobilité durable’s mission is to ensure the management, regulatory enforcement, and innovative development of paid on-street and off-street parking throughout the city of Montreal. Through its leadership, it will contribute to improving customer experience, street sharing and public domain occupation by supporting actions that promote urban mobility.

Since January 1, 2020, the Société en commandite Stationnement de Montréal’s activities, as well as those of the Service d’application réglementaire de stationnement (SARS), previously under the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal, have been transferred to the Agence de mobilité durable.

[1] From August 21 to 27, 2020, a study was conducted on Saint-Catherine Street, between Atwater and Metcalfe streets, to find out 100 merchants’ appreciation of the new configuration of public space on St. Catherine Street. Mainly retail outlets (fashion, electronics, convenience, etc.), restaurants and offices offering professional services were interviewed.

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