Concordia’s new tunnel is about ready

View of the tunnel from just outside the turnstiles at the Guy metro

A tunnel connecting the Guy metro station to Concordia University’s Hall Building and library building downtown is finally complete, and the finishing touches are being applied before it’s open to the public.

Great timing. Just when people finally want to venture outside again, we have an excuse not to.

View of the new tunnel from the old tunnel connecting the Hall and library buildings

The tunnel, which stretches for about a block and a half (and as you can see above, doesn’t feature much to look at or do), won’t just shelter students from the cold. They’ll also bring students away from downtown traffic, and cut down significantly on the number of jaywalkings across de Maisonneuve Blvd. from students heading from the metro to classes at the Hall Building.

The tunnel also connects the two parts of Concordia’s downtown campus: the old section comprising the Hall Building (built in the 1960s and with a rich history, particularly because the Concordia Student Union is housed there) and the J.W. McConnell Library Building (opened in 1992), and the new section with the GM building (formerly used for business classes and which is slated for renovation), the EV building (engineering, computer science and visual arts, opened in 2005) and the new John Molson School of Business building, which opened last fall.

Map of Concordia tunnels: Blue are already in use, red is the new tunnel to Guy metro

While it would still be a stretch to call this an Underground City West, the growth of only the past half decade leaves hope for commercial expansion that might make life in those tunnels more interesting.

UPDATE: The Link has video of a trip through the tunnel, which seems to show a lot of water infiltration:

UPDATE (April 9): The tunnel is open now, and the university says those puddles in the video above are nothing to worry about.

9 thoughts on “Concordia’s new tunnel is about ready

  1. alumni

    This is great news! would have been nice had it been done…oh…in 1995!!! when I started at Concordia…oh well, my loss! lol

    Reply
  2. Jean Naimard

    What I can’t fathom is why they labouriously dug a tunnel under Maisonneuve from Guy to Bishop, instead of just tunnelling below Bishop between the “building-standing-on-the-old-York-Theatre” and the library???

    Reply
    1. Fagstein Post author

      I think you mean under Mackay, and that would still require a tunnel from de Maisonneuve, where the library building is, to Ste. Catherine, where the EV building is.

      And that would create a rather roundabout route for students wanting to go from the Hall Building to the metro. This tunnel is much more direct.

      Reply
      1. Jean Naimard

        Yeah, Mackay, I meant.

        It might have been slightly more roundabout, but certainly not in terms of digging, and surface disruption…

        Reply
        1. Fagstein Post author

          The surface was already being disrupted for the restructuring of de Maisonneuve Blvd. between Mackay and Guy, so building a tunnel was pretty easy there.

          Reply
  3. Thoth Harris

    The new tunnel is a great idea. As you point out, it will divert the crowds jaywalking, meandering, and just generally blocking the sidewalks on de Maisonneuve, etc. I have a feeling the city will constantly make excuses to dig up de Maisonneuve, though. Vote buying? Union buying? Something, anyway. What a pity it takes years and years for just one little tunnel to get built. If it were a non-Canadian city, and particularly a non-Quebec city, it would be much cheaper and much faster to build. Astonishing how expensive just two métro stops to Laval cost! And I know, it’s underwater. But so what? Other cities and other countries can do it. Not to mention the Montreal metro is slower than an icicle melting in the arctic.

    Reply
    1. Jean Naimard

      It’s a good thing that, as an obviously very excellent indivitual at the acme of his prime, you are well outside of Québec, and do not have to deal with our substantial substandardness, eh?

      Reply
  4. Thoth Harris

    @Jean Naimard Haha, very funny Jean. However, if you took the time to do REAL research about me, instead of superficial research, you would avoid the potshots. I lived in Montreal for 15+ years. Travel provides perspective; it doesn’t, as apparently you want to imply, narrow it.

    Reply
  5. Michelle

    @Jean Naimard Haha, very funny Jean. However, if you took the time to do REAL research about me, instead of superficial research, you would avoid the potshots. I lived in Montreal for 15+ years. Travel provides perspective; it doesn’t, as apparently you want to imply, narrow it.

    Reply

Leave a Reply