232 metres and no more: Plante vows to leave skyscraper height cap below Mount Royal
MONTREAL -- As part of her platform to get re-elected Nov. 7, Projet Montreal leader Valerie Plante pledged to respect the status quo when it comes to the maximum heights of Montreal buildings to respect the view from Mount Royal.
Architect emeritus Phyllis Lambert has joined the chorus and will respect the 1992 Urban Plan that caps building heights at 232 metres above sea level.
The promise is in response to rival candidate Denis Coderre, who suggested Montreal developers should be allowed to build higher than the mountain to combat urban sprawl.
"To reduce the price of housing, we must increase the supply," Coderre wrote on Twitter. "That's why we're putting forward the idea of building upwards. We have to do it intelligently, with a real consultation with Montrealers."
Plante took aim at Coderre in her statement on Tuesday.
"Candidate Coderre's promise, written in his program book and reiterated in his interview, puts our status as a UNESCO City of Design at risk, in addition to opening the door to a privatization of the views of the mountain," she wrote. "We will never follow this path, which would not benefit the people of Montreal."
In 2006, Montreal was designated a UNESCO City of Design and joined the Creative Cities network along with Shanghai, Melbourne, Barcelona and others.
Quebec City joined the list as a City of Literature in 2017, the same year Toronto joined as a City of Media.
"This designation, as well as Montreal's natural and built heritage, are now threatened by the ambivalence of candidate Denis Coderre," the Projet Montreal release reads.
"Limiting the height of buildings in the downtown core is a fundamental commitment to the future of Montreal and to a sustainable economic recovery that is fair to everyone," said Lambert.
"Protecting the views to and from the mountain ensures that all Montrealers, of all origins, orientations, languages, and political, social, and philosophical orientations, have access to this jewel."