Soulanges Irish

The new Soulanges Irish Society officially launched its new non-profit organization as the off island’s official organizers for all things St. Patrick’s Day related.

“We are going to build on the success of the annual parade in Hudson and include residents of all communities in the region,” said Jay de la Durantaye, Soulanges Irish Society president.

New flood plan

A new flood plan was released by the CAQ government and many homeowners who were arbitrarily placed on the new proposed special planning zone (SPZ) decree concerning new flood zones were shocked at the fact their areas were included because they were nowhere near water.

Quebec then made an amended map that was more reflective of the realities.

The recurring theme at the West Island fora attended by capacity crowds during public consultations was that many residents from all over the West Island expressed disbelief that their properties were currently in flood zones as per the new flood mapping but had never been hit by either the 2017 or May flooding or any other for that matter.

The statement noted that in the new “adjusted version” of the maps, only areas affected by the 1027 and 2019 floods will be considered for the SPZ noting that “30 municipalities will no longer be part of the SPZ.”

Pierrefonds-Roxboro Mayor Jim Beis spoke to the bureaucrats at the meetings stating that since the 2017 flooding, “no initiative by the Quebec government that would help the citizens and municipalities build the proper infrastructure to prevent this from happening again has been undertaken. You used the 2017 flooding as the basis of your maps whereas the 2019 flooding affected 50 to 60 homes compared to 850 homes in 2017,” Beis told the bureaucrats to great applause from residents.

Meloche quarry covered

The old Meloche quarry, that had been spewing malodorous smells to nearby residents for years, was finally covered thanks to a certificate of authorization granted by the provincial government for the company that owns the site.

“It is with great enthusiasm that my Borough Council and I welcome this excellent news, which represents a turning point for residents living near the quarry,” said Mayor Dimitrios Jim Beis.

With this mandate, the company that owns the site, GFL, will ensure that the quarry will be completely sealed, having become a landfill for dry materials 20 years ago. The work to cover the site began this August and GFL Vice-President Daniel Brien said that the work should “be completed by the end of 2020.”

Plante’s Park

Following Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante’s announcement of a new 3,000 hectare park entitled Grand parc de l’Ouest (Grand Western Park) that will encompass various established green spaces such as Cap-Saint-Jacques, l’Anse-à-l’Orme and Rapides-du-Cheval-Blanc among others, the three developers of the proposed Cap Nature Pierrefonds West project put the city on notice.

The developers sued Plante, the city of Montreal as well as the borough of Pierrefonds-Roxboro for $178 million. The case was brought due to the the fact that the new park would have effectively end the proposed housing development that could have brought almost 6,000 new housing units to the area. Plante then used $73 million of public money to buy the developers’ 140 hectares.

Amazon comes to West Island

Amazon Canada announced it would be setting up its first fulfilment centre in the province and that it will be in Lachine, bringing in 300 full time positions.

The site is expected to be up and ready for next year’s holiday season rush.

Vaudreuil-Soulanges will get hospital

According to Health Minister Danielle McCann the site for the much needed needed hospital for Vaudreuil-Soulanges and other off island cities will be adjacent to the 30 and 40 highways. Construction is slated to only begin in February two years from now and the new hospital will feature about 400 beds and 11 operating rooms.

ASM protests Montreal payment process

With the city of Montreal releasing its lasted budget, the ASM (Association of Suburban Municipalities) demanded that the city renegotiate the payment process between the suburbs and the central city.

“From our point of view, the amounts paid in shares by the citizens of the related cities of the agglomeration are, in a very large proportion, significantly higher than those of Montreal for agglomeration services,” stated ASM president and Montreal West Mayor Beny Masella.

The ASM is even seeking input from the provincial government on the matter in the event that the city of Montreal cannot come to an equitable agreement with the ASM.

“We, therefore, ask the City of Montreal to review its position and broaden the scope of discussions in order to find a method of calculation that is fair, equitable and acceptable to all. Otherwise, we are asking the Quebec government to appoint an independent mediator to resolve this impasse,” said Masella.

WIAF fire

Fire broke out in the West Island Assistance Fund offices located in the Pierrefonds-Roxboro borough just before Christmas, gutting the building. There were no injuries.

Almost 100 firefighters were called to fight the blaze and as a precaution, surrounding buildings and streets had their Hydro lines cut as a safety measure before being restored hours later.

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