A new lease on life for downtown and the East End of Montreal

Two areas of Montreal deserve special attention because of specific issues: downtown, which must recover from the pandemic, and Montreal's East End, which has been unloved and marked by the departure of major industries.

The downtown plan

Deserted by workers, students and tourists, the downtown area is now unrecognizable. In order to give it back its unique vitality, we will work to make it more lively, busier and more visited.

For a more visited downtown, we propose to :

  • Make the new Cité-du-Havre district an international destination by: providing access to the waterfront (with a half-kilometre beach on Mackay Pier and water activities in the basins); linking Parc Jean-Drapeau to Old Montreal with two pedestrian and bicycle bridges at the end of the Pointe-du-Moulin and Bickerdike piers; and showcasing the site’s rich industrial heritage (notably Silo #5 and the Five Roses building) and Expo 67;
  • Ensure that the REM de l’Est is not only well integrated into downtown and the East End for the transit of workers, but also a vector of attraction by being an architectural masterpiece, both in its interior and exterior aspects;
  • Provide the Downtown commercial development corporation with a $10M envelope to address issues of cleanliness, safety and urban health; 
  • Develop a strategy to beautify downtown fronts and commercial windows;
  • Proposing universal pricing for the large underground parking lots in the downtown area in order to simplify life for those who wish to use them and to make them more attractive;
  • Implement incentive pricing for parking in Montreal so that Montrealers pay less for parking when they use SSVs, carpooling or electric cars;
  • Create geographic zones of differentiated taxation to stimulate the establishment of certain industries and to help merchants.

A Renaissance for Montreal’s East End

Virtually “forgotten” for decades, Montreal’s East End deserves our utmost attention. Its potential for renaissance is enormous: more beautiful, greener, cleaner, more pleasant. From the most polluted area of Montreal, we want to make the East End the best place to live. First of all, by creating a pole of green industries and making it an ecological “Silicon Valley”. Our ambition is to replace the most polluting activities of the metropolis (linked to fossil fuels) with the most innovative activities for the energy transition. 

But it would be more than just an economic hub, we want a city of ecological businesses, green startups, and eco-responsible housing.    

This vision of economic and sustainable development in the East is accompanied by a vision of 100,000 inhabitants, which will attract many families and workers in the coming years, especially to work in our famous “Silicon Valley” of green technologies. The City of Montreal must ensure that the infrastructure is in place to accommodate them.  

The East End Renaissance project is an extraordinary collective project and will be an inexhaustible source of pride. Let’s look at the road ahead, imagine together what this territory could be and build it hand in hand.  

To create a green economic pole in the East, Ensemble Montréal proposes to :

  • Allow residential densification around the eastern stations of the Green Line, in line with the extension of the Blue Line and the Eastern REM to create thousands of new homes;
  • Work with the provincial and federal levels of government to propose a cocktail of tax incentives for green industries to create a green business cluster; 
  • Launching an international green economy mission to attract companies to come and settle in the East End of Montreal
  • Put forward an industrial requalification strategy to maximize the areas where there could be residential development;  
  • Accelerate decontamination and begin in the first year through a phytoremediation process for all vacant and contaminated lands in the East End so that they are all decontaminated by 2035, in conjunction with existing programs;
  • Increase municipal infrastructure capacity (aqueducts (water supply), sewers, etc.);
  • Create a zero-carbon urban delivery hub; 
  • Entering into good faith negotiations with the Ray-Mont logistics company to purchase its land in the Maisonneuve-Longue-Pointe district in order to better develop the areas with citizens and other partners; 

To improve the quality of life of the citizens of the East, a Coderre-Gelly administration will propose to:

  • Ensure the extension of the northern branch of the REM from the East to Rivière-des-Prairies;
  • To perpetuate the river shuttle and increase its frequency and services to downtown Montreal and to create a pilot project with the riverside suburbs (Terrebonne, Repentigny, Varennes, Boucherville);
  • Create the ecotourism park project on Sainte-Thérèse Island in collaboration with neighbouring cities and form a new river link to the new park on Sainte-Thérèse Island for residents of the East End of Montreal;
  • Ensure increased monitoring of air quality in the East End of Montreal and review greenhouse gas emission standards at the MMC.

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