8 Billion Dollar Facelift Proposed for Montreal


Nascar_James
#1
Looks like more of the same in my old city. Taxes just keep going up. This time it's 8 billion dollars that taxpayers will have to fork over for this new facelift project. Incredible!

http://www.canada.com/montreal/montr...0-d66d41f8540b

Waterfront project called city's biggest renewal since Expo 67

ALAN HUSTAK
The Montreal Gazette

Friday, October 07, 2005

Part of the Bonaventure Expressway will be put underground in the proposals for the area.

Parts of the Bonaventure Expressway would be torn up and the old Griffintown district would be revitalized as part of an $8-billion plan that is being hailed as Montreal's biggest urban renewal project since Expo 67.

Former Quebec premier Lucien Bouchard and Senator Francis Fox, co-chairpersons of the Societe du Havre de Montreal, pitched the proposal yesterday to the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal.

It would cost taxpayers $650 million just to remove sections of the Bonaventure to allow the city to reclaim a strip of shoreline along the St. Lawrence River, but the project's backers say the economic return would be worth it.

The massive project, known as Vision 2025, also would include the relocation of the casino to Point St. Charles from Ile Notre Dame, wholesale development of the Peel Basin, and the introduction of a light-rail transit system that would start from downtown and travel through Griffintown and the Old Port to the east end of Old Montreal.

The Societe du Havre de Montreal is a non-profit organization responsible for promoting development of the city's harbourfront.

It initially unveiled the master plan a year ago.

Two feasibility studies to determine the costs involved have come up with the $650-million price tag for the first phase of the plan. That would reroute sections of the Bonaventure Expressway through a tunnel and turn other elevated sections between University St. and the Peel Basin into an urban boulevard.

The project would require participation by the federal and Quebec governments, however.

"If Montreal is to progress, if it wants to improve its quality of life, if it is to regain its international status, we have to go ahead with this," Bouchard said.

"It's not money lost. The revenues from investment would be considerable."

If the plan goes ahead, the first phase requires demolishing the portion of the Bonaventure Expressway that hugs the river in front of the Technoparc between the Peel Basin and Nuns' Island.

Fox admitted it's a challenge, but he said the work wouldn't be as expensive as it appears.

"Any number of federal programs already exist," he said.

"We're talking federal programs for infrastructure. We are not talking about outrageous amounts of money.

"The project would finance itself due to the economic spinoffs generated by the resulting real-estate development," he added.

"I'm also talking about job creation, and the estimated $2.7 billion in real-estate investments and additional government revenues.

Mayor Gerald Tremblay said afterward: "It's not a pipe dream. If both the federal and provincial governments could together invest $60 million in the Quartier International development (in and around Victoria Square) and realize an immediate $250-million return, its not a pipe dream.

"We now have to convince the federal and provincial governments to change their mindset and stop focusing on the debt and deficits and concentrate on investments that create wealth."

The engineering study was conducted by SNC-Lavalin, and the study on economic spinoffs by Genivar, an engineering and construction company.
 
Ten Packs
#2
THIS? - from a city that is still paying off the Olympic debt, from HOW MANY YEARS AGO???

Unbelieveable.....
 
Nascar_James
#3
Yep. However, it is not unbelievable. When it comes to Montreal, tax is the rule of the day. The folks there just love dishing out $$$. It never ends.

The mayor in Montreal should change his party's name from The Montreal Island Citizens' Union (MICU) to the MTP ... The Montreal Tax Party.
 
Reverend Blair
#4
So they should let the city fall apart instead?
 
Nascar_James
#5
Rev, this isn't a matter of simply fixing up the city. 8 billion dollars is not what I'd call routine maintenance. What they are doing is investing on a facelift project on the backs of the taxpayers. Yep, they're investing to make money, but the capital for the investment comes from the taxpayers.

This is the best type of investment for any level of government (Federal, Provincial, Municipal) since they have nothing to lose, but everything to gain. The only sucke ... er I mean the only ones losing are the taxpayers.
 
Reverend Blair
#6
If it works...if the project does make money...then it will benefit the taxpayers.

It also benefits the taxpayers in other ways. The city becomes nicer to live in. Tourism increases bringing in business for local companies.

Your arguments are much like the ones heard here when the foot bridge from The Forks or St Boniface was built. There was a group of people who would have preferred that there be no bridge at all. If there had to be a bridge, they would have preferred that it be strictly utilitarian.

Fortunately those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing lost the battle and we have a beautiful bridge that has increased foot traffic in the area. The city is better off because that bridge is there.

The same applies in Montreal. Major facelift projects have benefits both tangible and intangible. Private enterprise, interested only in their own personal greed, will not take on such projects. That leaves governments no choice but to take on the projects themselves.
 
Nascar_James
#7
I still say a project with the scope of this one (8 billion dollars), should require some kind of vote by the folks paying for it.

After all, it is their money that is being gambled away.
 
Reverend Blair
#8
Yup, but you'd be building nothing but strip malls if we left things up to you.
 
Nascar_James
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by Reverend Blair

Yup, but you'd be building nothing but strip malls if we left things up to you.

Well Rev, we need those strip malls so you could engage in your favorite pastime ...


leads to
 
Reverend Blair
#10
Actually, I could have gone to a strip mall tonight, but I've chosen to go a bar to shoot pool instead of going to a pool hall to shoot pool.

That's all assuming that Mrs. Rev ever gets ready, of course.
 
Nascar_James
#11
You should have picked the strip mall Rev. After all, we need to keep supporting those strip mall builders and contractors.
 
Shiva
#12
Anyone else irritated that Lucien Bouchard remembers the federal gov't when he wants money? What a hypocrite.
 
Vitamin C
#13
Quebec is second only to Ontario in their contribution to Canada's Gross Domestic Product. Federal money is THEIR money. Don't forget THAT.
 
Shiva
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by Vitamin C

Quebec is second only to Ontario in their contribution to Canada's Gross Domestic Product. Federal money is THEIR money. Don't forget THAT.

I didn't say the people of Quebec don't have a right to their tax money, I said and stand by it being hypocritical for a separatist to call on the financial resources of a nation he's trying to get rid of. It certainly fuels the idea in the rest of the country that people like him are spouting separatist beliefs as a mere means of extracting more money from the federal gov't in a blackmail-like fashion. If he believes in a cause, he should live within the integrity of his position. Either he supports the federal gov't involvement in Quebec or he doesn't, period. His lack of integrity on the issue is good reason to call him a hypocrite.
 
Gary
#15
I don't have any problem with improving Montreal as long as it's taxpayers from there that pay the bills rather than from Ontario and Alberta through federal transfer payments.
 
splinters
#16
I really wish the Montreal and the Laval administration would stop wasting our money on such stupid ****. They're spending millions on a metro stations in Laval that nobody needs (seeing as there's a proper one just over the bridge), in the most dangerous pedestrian spot in laval, when we could've just spend loads less on updating and fixing our train system. Of course prices are going to hike up on everything, namely bus passes.
Now there's this fuss over the kickbacks both Tremblay and Borque's parties have taken. I see an independant if the Gazette can call anything.
 
splinters
#17
James, do any reading on the three-day Gazette Investigation on the contracting scandals? I wouldn't take a second wonder at the possibility of any of these boobjobs have anything to do with this facelift.
 
MMMike
#18
Sometimes cities need to make investments like this to make their city more attractive to live and invest in. It could pay off in the long run if properly conceived and executed. But don't hold your breath. They've been talking about a similar waterfront rejuvenation project for DECADES in Toronto - still all talk. Meanwhile the waterfront has largely been obscured and developed with condos.
 
Nascar_James
#19
Well Splinters, the folks who elected the politicians in Montreal and Laval are partly to blame for this mess. As long as the Liberals stay in power, politicians in Montreal (ie. mayor Tremblay et Al) will take advantage of the situation and go off on these huge spending binges. They know taxes at all three levels of government can easily be raised, so the governments group together and go off on these hairbrained projects. I recall back in the mid 90's, the Conservatives were somewhat popular in the West Island. What happened to them? It's like they simply vanished from Quebec.

I did not keep current with the recent developments on the contracting scandals, Splinters. I don't have access to the Gazette here in Oklahoma.
 
splinters
#20
The Gazette's available online!
 
Nascar_James
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by splinters

The Gazette's available online!

That it is, however you can't read all articles unless you subscribe. The only paper I know that does this.
 
splinters
#22
I could always mail you a copy. But yunnow..
WAIT! I could getcha some scans!
 
Nascar_James
#23
Quote: Originally Posted by splinters

I could always mail you a copy. But yunnow..

hmmmm ... that would wind up being a pretty expensive proposition on your part, splinters ... would probably eat up all your allowance ... for the extra postage

Quote: Originally Posted by splinters

WAIT! I could getcha some scans!

That would be a good idea, if you could figure out a way around the copyright laws ...
 
splinters
#24
Huh. You oughts know better than to think a sixteen year old webjunkie cares much about copyright laws.
Besides, it's not exactly like they can mail it to you.
Either that or I hold it up to my webcam.

(meanwhile Nascar calls the RIAA)
 
Nascar_James
#25
Or I can simply absorb all the news through Osmosis......
 
splinters
#26
From a leftist like me? Hah. You'd rather eat rocks.
 
Vitamin C
#27
Is Lucien Bouchard really a separatist? He is a sovereigntist, but I don't know about separatist.

It was him who insisted on the wording of the last referendum in Quebec, wording that made it seem like people might be voting to negotiate a new arrangement with Canada that didn't necessarily involve a separation.

Because of that wording Lucien Bouchard and Jacque Parizeau (hardcore separatist) become bitter enemies.....And that wording also had a major affect on the outcome of the referendum.......accidental? Who knows.

Politics in Quebec is much more complicated than Federalist vs Separatist.

And if it is Quebecois money I don't see the hypocracy of a separatist wanting their own money because of how they want to spend it.
 
Nascar_James
#28
Quote: Originally Posted by splinters

From a leftist like me? Hah. You'd rather eat rocks.

Well, considering the paper is left leaning ... I'd be eating rocks anyways ...
 
splinters
#29
Quote: Originally Posted by Nascar_James

Quote: Originally Posted by splinters

From a leftist like me? Hah. You'd rather eat rocks.

Well, considering the paper is left leaning ... I'd be eating rocks anyways ...

Well it's not like left leaning's that terrible. I mean, it's better than "everything's right as rain".
 
Nascar_James
#30
Quote: Originally Posted by splinters

Quote: Originally Posted by Nascar_James

Quote: Originally Posted by splinters

From a leftist like me? Hah. You'd rather eat rocks.

Well, considering the paper is left leaning ... I'd be eating rocks anyways ...

Well it's not like left leaning's that terrible. I mean, it's better than "everything's right as rain".

hmmmm ... I guess it all depends on where you live, Splinters. Since left-leaning is the mainstream in Montreal, you feel right at home. Here in Oklahoma, right-leaning is the rule of day. A good paper here is the Tulsa Beacon.

Check it out at www.tulsabeacon.com
 

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