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PSMW 2018

When we were told the big guns were coming out in Quebec City, who knew they were talking about PSMW 2018?

On the eve of the G7 Summit in Quebec City, it was PSMW that stole the show with a program that had everyone talking about planes, trains and automobiles - not to mention taking a deep dive into an Olympian's life.

With close to 400 people in attendance for the two-day learning event on June 4-5 at the Le Hotel Concorde, we heard key messages focused on public infrastructure governance, inter-jurisdictional perspectives on infrastructure management and sustainable investments.

It was a journey that showed us the health and safety of workers and environmental effects - essentially afterthoughts in the past - are as vital to the planning process as the infrastructure itself.

Stephane Jean told us in undertakings like the Romaine Project, Hydro-Quebec has sought input from the local Innu community to ensure the needs of all are respected, as an entire sustainable community has been built in northern Quebec to house Hydro workers.

We heard from VIA Rail's Chairperson of the Board of Directors, Francoise Bertrand, who talked about a proposed High Frequency Rail along the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor - imagine 75 minutes from Ottawa to Montreal or Montreal to Quebec City in a little more than two hours! Talk about Insight to Foresight! Talk about going green and clean!

We were given a peek into how Infrastructure Canada is investing in projects ranging from public transit to green infrastructure to rural and Nordic communities by Assistant Deputy Minister and Chief Financial Officer, Corporate Services, Darlene Boileau.

Gartner Research Director De'Onn Griffin relayed the importance of the workforce not only learning new ways of doing things, but also letting go of the past, quoting futurist Alvin Toffler: "The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn."

And, of course, PSMW finished with a splash, and a standing ovation, as Olympic gold-medal-winning diver Sylvie Bernier extolled the virtues of our personal infrastructure - because we need to be at the top of our game in order to be successful.

Thanks to our sponsor, BMO Financial Group, delegates were able enjoy a reception at the Observatoire de la Capitale, featuring spectacular views of Quebec City, which simply can't be seen anywhere else around town.

At fmi*igf National Office, we would like to thank all the volunteers who made PSMW a rousing success, specifically co-chairs Suzanne Chiricota and Dany Roy and their team of Joelle Jobin, Patrick Dubuc, Veronique St-Hilaire, Peter Fequet and Marie-Jose Bisson. And kudos to Quebec Chapter president Eric Miranda and vice-president Nicholas Delisle, along with the FMI Board of Directors and the many, many onsite event volunteers.

And save the date: May 13-14, 2019, River Rock Resort, Richmond, B.C., for PSMW 2019 Vancouver. Be there!