by Kevin Woodhouse
Mayor Coderre announces Pierrefonds West Development to take 10 years to complete and involve public consultation
The almost four hundred hectare green space is located between the 440 East, Cap St. Jacques, Senneville and Kirkland and Coderre announced that 185 hectares will be developed for residences, commerce and industry while 180 hectares will be set aside as an eco-territory.
Coderre was joined at the press conference by Pierrefonds-Roxboro Mayor Dimitros Jim Beis and Rusell Copeman, executive committee member responsible for housing, urban planning, buildings, real estate transactions and strategies, and the Office of Public Consultation.
The development will bring 6,000 new residences to the area, a plan Coderre called “harmonious development with nature conservation in mind. This project has been on our radar for a long time and the process will be a long one, about ten years which will justify total success in the long run,” Coderre told the assembled.
Coderre noted that 30% of new construction will focus on affordable housing, a strategy to keep more families within Montreal. Proximity services for the new residences will also be considered as well as many green spaces and parks within the proposed 180 hectares to be developed.
“There will be a central core with local shops as well as cultural and recreational services,” the Montreal Mayor said adding that at least two new schools will be built in the new development.
“Sustainable development does not mean no development at all,” said Coderre. “But this project will be done with citizens’ input in mind and there will be public consultations every step of the way.”
In order to foster a community spirit for the new proposed Pierrefonds West, Coderre spoke about integrating public transportation to help with traffic flow as well as a possible link to an existing metro line.
There are also plans for community gardens and partnering with local food producers and a public park that “will be twice the size of Mont Royal,” said Coderre.
And while negotiations are ongoing between Coderre and The Ministry of Transport about the extension of the 440, Coderre made it clear that “there is no project if there is no boulevard.”
Beis assured residents that throughout the process, “you will be consulted and all local, environmental and social concerns will be addressed.”
But not all residents welcome the proposed project, prompting some to create the grassroots Sauvons L’Anse-a-L’Orme, an organization that wants to protect the entire green space from any kind of development.
The non-profit group launched a petition noting that the proposed “development will destroy the ecosystem and its local and unique biodiversity. It will have a negative effect in the quality of life of citizens by bringing more than 10,000 cars and would increase property taxes for all Borough residents who will pay for the construction of this residential development in a non-serviced area”
“We will be going door to door to get residents to sign the petition and will continue to make our presence felt at council meetings because we think it is important to save the last unprotected green space on the island,” said group co-founder Scott Stitt.
Once the project is eventually completed, residents “will have a rare occasion to be part of a new development in nature where people can live, work and play in this new neighbourhood,” said Coderre.
The Montreal Mayor sees Pierrefonds-West as “the creation of a new development model to enhance the quality of life for Montrealers.”
Public consultations on the development will begin in the fall.
PHOTO CAPTIONS: (Coderre announces Pierrefonds West 1-3) Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre (c) spoke to media last Friday morning about a new development plan for Pierrefonds West that could bring 6,000 new residences within the next ten years while (l) Russell Copeman, executive committee member responsible for responsible for housing, urban planning, buildings, real estate transactions and strategies and (r) Pierrefonds-Roxboro Mayor Dimitros Jim Beis look on.