CEO’s Message

Technology and resource optimization

“Necessity is the mother of invention.” This English proverb is particularly relevant when it comes to the Port of Montreal. Our unique geographic location has forced us to innovate in order to optimize what we do with our resources.

There are two factors that stimulate our sense of creativity. First, the territory of the Port of Montreal is sandwiched between the river and some of the city’s residential areas. Second, the port’s location on the St. Lawrence River, near major markets, provides us with a competitive advantage. Nevertheless, we must develop state-of-the-art technological tools in order to optimize navigation on the river and in the port.

Physical and natural constraints have led to the creation of a first-rate truck management system that speeds up container movements on the port. This system is renowned throughout the world, and we have welcomed many international delegations to witness first-hand the “Montreal Model.”
What might be less known are the technological tools that we have developed to facilitate electronic navigation. The underlying principle is as follows: the better we can measure precise water levels in real time, the better we can optimize those water levels. We are fortunate in that we have at our disposal one of the world’s greatest “blue highways”: the St. Lawrence River. Using geomatics, we are creating new measuring tools that allow for vessels to be used to their maximum while minimizing the environmental impact on human activities. You can read all about this in the “Players” section of this PortInfo.

The file on new technologies used in ports will also take you to Valencia, Tanjung Pelepas, Balboa, Colon and Vancouver. The maritime transportation industry is evolving rapidly with, for example, the arrival of giant new container ships, and the emergence of new economies and the decline of others.

New technologies, particularly in communications, are providing original solutions to today’s issues when you consider that they themselves are not necessarily factors that influence evolution. We must learn them, understand them, and strive to integrate them into our management practices. This issue will give all of us something to think about. I wish you good reading !

The Holiday Season is just around the corner. On behalf of the entire team at the Port of Montreal, I wish all of our readers, clients and partners a Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year. Enjoy the Holidays. See you next year !


Sylvie Vachon

President and Chief Executive Officer
Montreal Port Authority