Snowdon councillor Marvin Rotrand has supported the criticisms of the Plante administration development policies outlined in the recent release of a Montreal Office of Public Consultation (OCPM) report calling on Montreal to revise its bylaw that new residential developments of 50 or more units must contain 20 percent social housing, 20 percent affordable housing and 20 percent three-bedroom units.
“The report repeats many of the arguments that I made when I voted against the bylaw both in its version at city council and at the borough,” Rotrand says.
The councillor cited the report’s finding that “limiting the territory of the regulation’s application to only the city of Montreal indeed represents a risk of displacement of real estate projects elsewhere in the Montreal Metropolitan Community,” and that the bylaw, according to media reports, “seems to go against the intention of the draft by-law to retain or even attract households to Montreal.”
“The effort to destroy capitalism in one city by Projét Montréal administration has been rebuked,” the councillor told The Suburban. “The office said ‘you’re simply raising the price of property, thus probably encouraging first-time buyers to look elsewhere than Montreal,’ and clearly, you’re inviting developers to develop anywhere in the Montreal Metropolitan Community other than Montreal. This was a failure waiting to happen.”
Rotrand said that what he considers “the most onerous and ill-reflected parts of the city’s policy,” would come into force Jan. 1, 2021.
“I will be asking that our council freeze the changes we made last year, mandate our services to review what we can easily change so that we have requirements in place that are workable and which will not assure development leaves our sector for greener pastures.”
The Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal’s president and CEO Michel Leblanc also weighed in on the OCPM’s findings, saying that while his organization supports the goal of inclusion and affordability “of the residential market, the by-law as proposed would reduce the number of housing starts and cause a shift in real estate activity outside of Montreal — the draft by-law must be modified.”