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  • Writer's pictureCarey Tate

R.E.M urban boulevard project bans cars: Mayor Jim Beis responds.

Montréal City Council approved a second loan bylaw that marks the beginning of a $60 million urban boulevard construction project. The access road will lead to the Kirkland REM station from Antoine-Faucon Street in Pierrefonds-Roxboro to Ste-Marie Road in Kirkland.

The road will only accommodate buses and cyclists, as per Mayoress Plante's decision, whose goal is to connect the road to a nearby urban park, the Grand Parc de l'Ouest, and promote the use of public transportation for REM users.

The Grand Parc is a network of five municipal parks on the West Island: Anse-à-l'Orme, Bois-de-l'Île-Bizard, Bois-de-la-Roche, Cap-St-Jacques, and Rapides-du-Cheval-Blanc. It spans more than 3,100 hectares.


Pierrefonds-Roxboro Borough Mayor Dimitrios Jim Beis made a case opposing the project at a Montréal City Council meeting on Monday, January 22nd. Beis highlighted the long-standing need for a connecting artery between the north and south sectors of the West Island, particularly for cars from Pierrefonds Boulevard to access Highway 40.

He reminded the council that discussions about an additional roadway for Pierrefonds-Roxboro and other West Island residents have been ongoing since 1986. However, the Plante Administration dismissed the plan for an urban boulevard in 2018 without consulting Beis, which he felt was imposed without consideration for residents.

Parking availability at the Kirkland R.E.M station has also been a point of contention for commuters in the surrounding area. In the early planning stages, 3,000 spots were to be made available, then 2,000, and now the predicted amount is in the hundreds. He believes that the Administration is unaware of the needs of West Islanders and that decisions such as these have been imposed unilaterally

Mayor Beis added that he is not anti-bike or public transport. However, 83% of West Islanders rely on their cars to get around, which needs to be kept in mind when planning transport projects that will serve the 30,000 people who live west of Saint-Charles.


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