The city of Pointe-Claire plans to pave a road through Alexandre Bourgeau Park. The road would be used as a new school bus route, however local residents of Pointe-Claire are unhappy with the city’s solution.
According to Mayor John Belvedere, a plan to reduce morning traffic near Marguerite-Bourgeoys elementary school on Ste-Anne Street has been in the works for about 20 years. He believes building a bus route near the back of the schoolyard is the safest and most effective manner to get the students to school.
“There will be a lot less movement, a lot less chance of a kid running between parked cars and if you go in that area you’re very restricted with what you can do. There is no way of making the roads larger,” he said.
Residents think differently. According to Stéphane Licari, a member of the Heart of Pointe-Claire group, the solution is unacceptable.
“This is going to be a monster road in a park where we said, you know, since when are we laying asphalt and cutting trees in parks?” said Licari. “This road is going to be way too close to the lake.”
Belvedere believes that the majority of the trees that need to be cut down are in fact contaminated ash trees.
“Every Ash tree is going to have to be cut down in Pointe-Claire,” he said. “If it wasn’t now, it would be next year.”
The city also vowed to plant more trees in the near future to replace the ones it will be cutting down.
Pointe-Claire will also plant more trees in the near future to replace those that were cut, he added.
Discussions are currently underway, and the Mayor stated he is open to changing the plan if the Marguerite-Bourgeoys school board (CSMB) or residents offer an alternative.