Turcot consortium confirms it won't build Turcot bike route
Published Tuesday, April 11, 2017 9:44PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, April 11, 2017 10:27PM EDT
The KPH-Turcot consortium confirmed Tuesday that it will not be building a pedestrian/bicycle route through the Turcot Interchange, although space will be reserved if some other group wants to build one.
Officials reiterated the news during a meeting with residents of NDG, Westmount, and the SouthWest borough, although it came as a disappointment for the thirty people in attendance.
"They've been trying to tell us that this bike-pedestrian path didn't even exist for a long period of time," said Lisa Mintz of Sauvons La Falaise.
"It wasn't a 'maybe that we're going to put on later' like they're saying now. This was what was put into the plan to make it acceptable to the public."
Mintz pointed out that when the Turcot project went through the provincially-mandated environmental review, the overwhelming majority of speakers rejected the plan until the Ministry of Transportation added greenspace, "a lot of which has since disappeared."
City councillor Craig Sauvé said that eliminating the pedestrian/bicycle path was not the best way to cut costs given the overall scope of the project.
"People are feeling a little upset it's taken out. If we look in the context of Turcot, it's a $3.8 billion project and it's an immense project. This overpass would not be one percent of that. It would be a small amount to put forward that is giving to people locally," said Sauvé.
The meeting also gave people a chance to air their concerns about noise and air pollution surrounding the construction.
Although construction crews are supposed to abide by strict noise limits, those limits have been violated hundreds of times.
Officials said the construction of a new noise-reducing walls should at least help mute the sound of traffic when the project is finished.
People were also concerned that the see-through walls would create a lot of glare as the sun, streetlights, and headlights reflected off the surface, but officials said the material had been chosen to minimize reflectitivity.