Ensemble Montréal pledges better management of City construction

Montreal, October 28, 2021 Montreal mayoral candidate and leader of Ensemble Montréal, Denis Coderre, and his team presented their commitments to ensure that the various construction sites throughout the city are managed efficiently. The party promises better work coordination, an increase in the road maintenance budget, and several methods to reduce the number of sites and limit their impact on retailers and residents.

“Some work will always be necessary to update our infrastructures, but we can make sure that it is not done at the expense of the quality of life of our citizens, the flow of traffic and economic vitality. Our team will make the City of Montreal more accountable for the negative impacts of construction sites on Montrealers and prevent it from turning into a perennial Orange Cone Festival,” said Mr. Coderre.

Better coordination to reduce bottlenecks

To ensure better coordination between the various projects and avoid their needless proliferation, Ensemble Montréal will help all parties involved to better coordinate by creating a database of all work planned or envisioned in the metropolis. A hackathon and partnerships with universities will help find innovative solutions, which will also have the added benefit of promoting Montreal’s talents and expertise.

“Between the work that needs redoing because something was forgotten or senseless traffic jams due to poor communication between the various parties involved, Montrealers have trouble getting around. It’s high time to take a leading role with construction sites, to coordinate them proactively and efficiently, and to offer some respite to residents and merchants,” said Aref Salem, City councillor for the Norman-McLaren district in the Saint-Laurent borough.

To prevent traffic coming to a standstill because of construction sites, sewer rehabilitation projects will be carried out in winter. The bonus/penalty system, which proved its merit in 2016 under the Coderre administration by making it possible to complete the work to revamp Saint-Denis Street one month earlier than planned, will be expanded. Certain regulations, such as the one against scheduling work on two parallel streets at the same time, will also come into effect. Having put in place several measures between 2014 and 2017 against systematically awarding contracts to the lowest bidder, notably the grey list, Denis Coderre and his team will go even further by integrating the performance evaluations in the contract-awarding process. 

An accountable administration

The Coderre-Gelly administration will be transparent with regard to the work carried out across the island, notably by developing a construction site management policy. This policy will require the City of Montreal to present an annual report on construction site management, including compliance with deadlines, the use of penalty clauses, cost overruns, nuisances and complaints. 

In addition, the City will be accountable to motorists and cyclists by assuming responsibility for damage to tires or suspension systems caused by potholes. Since claim procedures are often long and overly complex, the time limit will be increased from 15 to 30 days and the City of Montreal will be required to respond within 90 days. To avoid this eventuality, Ensemble Montréal will invest $50 million a year in a preventative road maintenance plan, in addition to reinvesting the $100 million that was cut by the current administration in the repair of local streets.

“We will clearly define what Montrealers have a right to expect. Because that’s what being accountable is all about: defining our responsibilities, being transparent about the City’s record and being accountable when the time comes to pay for mistakes,” added Chantal Rossi, City councillor for the Ovide-Clermont district in the Montreal North borough. 

Although some work is unavoidable, the party will make sure to limit its impact. The use of liaison officers will be expanded to ensure better communication with Montrealers and to ensure the social acceptability of the work sites. Even construction site fencing will be reviewed to improve the signage and indications on the nature of the work, potential nuisances and timetables. Finally, residents and merchants will be able to find out more about the work in progress and planned, since all relevant information will be made available to them on the City of Montreal’s website, in collaboration with our partners. 

Read about the other measures proposed by Ensemble Montréal regarding construction sites here:

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