Ottawa

No date set for lifting traffic restrictions between Ottawa and Gatineau

The Quebec government has plans to ease travel restrictions in May in several parts of the province, including the Outaouais — but not in the city of Gatineau.

Volume of traffic between cities a concern, says Quebec's deputy premier

Gatineau police set up roadblocks on the Quebec side of the Alexandra Bridge. While some roadblocks are being removed in the province, this one remains. (Francis Ferland/CBC)

The Quebec government has plans to ease travel restrictions in May in several parts of the province, including the Outaouais — but not in the city of Gatineau.

Deputy premier Geneviève Guilbault said at a Wednesday news conference that her government still needs to analyze the situation before establishing when travel will no longer be restricted in the municipality.

Guilbault said the province had concerns about the volume of people who normally cross the five interprovincial bridges between Ottawa and Gatineau.

Checkpoints were set up on the bridges and other roadways on April 1, after the government banned non-essential travel into western Quebec in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Police are currently carrying out random road checks, asking drivers and passengers about the purpose of their trip to determine whether it's for an allowable reason, like essential work or a medical appointment.

Roadblocks elsewhere in the province will be lifted on:

May 4: Laurentides, Lanaudière, Chaudière-Appalaches and Rouyn-Noranda.

May 11: Outaouais (except Gatineau), Abitibi-Témiscamingue, La Tuque and Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean.

May 18: Bas-St-Laurent, Gaspésie, Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Charlevoix, Côte-Nord.

With files from Jérémie Bergeron and CBC Montreal

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