March 11, 2016 6:32 pm
Updated: March 11, 2016 6:48 pm

Fight to save the Dorval golf course heating up

WATCH ABOVE: The group fighting to protect the Dorval Municipal Golf Course from Aeroports de Montreal now has the Sierra Club and the Royal Canadian Legion on its side. Global's Tim Sargeant finds out what that means for the future.

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DORVAL — Local residents, the Royal Canadian Legion, environmentalists and golf players are teaming up to fight the Trudeau Airport from building on the municipal course on Cardinal Avenue.

Floris Ensink of the Sierra Club argues a provision within the lease between the federal transport department and the airport precludes the airport from developing on the golf course without a zoning change from the City of Dorval.

“I feel confident that the airport cannot ignore this,” he told Global News.

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An injunction currently prohibits the airport from expanding onto the green space until a final legal ruling is made. The issue is currently before the courts.

Club members have given up trying to save the course; instead, their focus has turned to protecting the green space from airport development.

“I’ve said this before, I’ll  it again… they’ve become bullies throughout this whole ordeal,” Dorval Municipal Golf Course VP Bruce Orr told Global News.

The airport has argued that it’s willing to build a 25-metre buffer zone on the land and a sound barrier to protect home owners on Thorncrest Avenue from the noise. But airport officials insist they need the land, known as Lot 7, which they own, to build a new security checkpoint as required by federal law.

In a statement issued to Global News, the Aéroports de Montréal wrote:

“ADM has always complied with all of its obligations under the terms of its lease with regard to consultations required for its development plans. The various stakeholders have been consulted on the development of Lot 7 since 2002.”

But supporters of the golf course and defenders of the green space argue that’s not good enough and that the airport can develop on its own unused property without touching green space.

The City of Dorval is paying the legal fees on behalf of the golf course defenders; fees that have so far cost more than $50,000.

It appears both sides are digging in their heels and this won’t likely be resolved until a federal judge makes a final ruling.

© 2016 Shaw Media

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