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  • Writer's pictureWest Island News

Unprecedented Investments of $153 billion for Québec's Public Infrastructure

The Government of Québec has announced the 2024-2034 Québec Infrastructure Plan (QIP) with a record-breaking budget of $153 billion. This marks a $3 billion increase over the previous plan and a significant $52.6 billion increase since the 2018-2028 QIP, reflecting a 52% increase over six years. At the announcement event in Québec City, Jonatan Julien, the Minister Responsible for Infrastructure, stated that the QIP would prioritize investments in key sectors such as health and social services, education and higher education, the road network and public transit, as well as social and community housing. The ambitious plan aims to meet the needs of the public by renovating existing infrastructures and building new ones.

The health and social services sector will receive $2.9 billion in new investments to fund major hospital construction, reconstruction, expansion, and redevelopment projects. The QIP also plans to construct seniors' homes and alternative residences (MDAAs) and reconstruct residential and long-term care centres based on the MDAA concept. Additional investments will be made to convert private facilities not under agreement to private facilities under agreement and carry out projects under agreements with the Cree Board of Health and Social Services of James Bay and the Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services. Education and higher education will also receive additional investments of $1.1 billion and almost $500 million, respectively.

The QIP will fund projects to add classrooms for training youth, repair work on components related to health and safety, building integrity, and equipment replacement. The higher education sector will use the investments to update programs aimed at tackling the labour shortage in certain priority areas at college and university levels, as well as provide more student housing. The QIP has earmarked $2 billion for maintaining road infrastructure in good condition, allowing nearly 700 projects to be carried out in 2024-2025 under the maintenance intervention strategy for roadways, structures, and municipal bridges in all regions.

Additionally, the development of public transit will receive nearly $700 million to promote public mobility, improve traffic flow, and electrify public transit. This will meet certain needs of the Société de transport de Saguenay and the Société de transport de Montréal, as well as the acquisition of various equipment by the public transit corporations, exo and the Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain. Finally, new investments of nearly $100 million will be allocated to the social and community housing sector for the renovation of low-rent housing units, in addition to the $900 million announced by the Gouvernement du Québec in the Fall 2023 Economic Update to build new community housing. In his statement, Minister Jonatan Julien emphasized that the sustainability of the infrastructure portfolio has been a key priority for the government for several years.

The investments of $87.6 billion earmarked for the next ten years will help maintain public infrastructure in good condition. The government's strategy of gradually increasing infrastructure maintenance investments has been implemented to ensure greater efficiency and accelerate project completion while reducing costs. The minister also announced that the government would unveil a two-year strategy to achieve these goals, which is the result of meetings held with partners and priority projects implemented in collaboration with colleagues since his arrival in 2022.



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