Transport Quebec is set to launch it’s own radio station. It’s going to keep motorists informed of Montreal area traffic. They intend to broadcast on 910 AM. It will cost over $2 million dollars to launch the station. About a dozen antennas will be put up across the region.
There are supposed to be similar services in other parts of the world. It seems that in Europe the services tend to be live, while in the States, they are usually recorded. I happened to hear one of the stations while heading down to New York City a few years ago. It played a loop informing drivers of traffic problems. I don’t know how often it was updated, but it seemed to be pretty accurate as to what was going on at the time.
We already hear a loop around Trudeau Airport. I don’t know if they ever update that with timely news or just play general information. I’ve only heard it a few times when in the vicinity. That one is bilingual. If the new traffic station isn’t, it won’t do much to help tourists… I’m also wondering whether there will be commercial breaks and sponsors… I’m pretty sure there are commercially-run all-traffic stations operating in Canada right now. It makes sense, actually… Do you think commercial radio stations will be thrilled with the idea or an all-traffic station run by the government? Probably not. Perhaps they will use it to gather traffic info for themselves.
Remember the classic scene from WKRP, where Les Nessman pounds his chest to make it sound like he’s reporting from a helicopter?