Projet Montreal unveils proposed site for Verdun beach
Published Wednesday, August 6, 2014 2:53PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, August 6, 2014 7:57PM EDT
With both the mayor and the borough on board with plans for a beach in Verdun, talk has now turned to figuring out where the beach will be.
Richard Bergeron and members of the Projet Montreal team unveiled the spot they’re backing for the new project, which lies behind the Verdun auditorium.
City councillor Sterling Downey says the spot behind the auditorium was overlooked.
“One of the problems with this location is it's behind a building, so people don't see it. We forget that it's here, but it's a hidden gem,” he said.
It's a place where you see dogs being walked, bike paths, and they say it’s an ideal location for the beach because it will require very little change to the environment -- there is already ample parking and it’s close to the metro line.
“Accessibility is key. Families need to have access to the beach. A beach should be about families and communities getting together and having a space to share,” Downey said.
The current frontrunner is a spot right off LaSalle Blvd. in front of the Douglas Mental Health Institute.
Although it is an idyllic location, the problem is there is next to no parking there and they would have to create parking spots eating up green space, say the Projet Montreal team.
The other problem is that it is the site where snow has been dumped over the years, and there is soil contamination.
Decontaminating that soil will be very costly and they really want to see this project happen by the tentative 2017 deadline, so all parties are trying to keep costs low.
The water quality and current would need to be tested at the Verdun auditorium site, but Projet Montreal says their proposal would be the most affordable route to go in creating a Verdun beach that they hope to see in the next few years.