April 7, 2016 3:44 pm
Updated: April 8, 2016 10:04 am

After 30 years, Westmount to install crosswalk between Dawson College, Alexis Nihon

WATCH ABOVE: The City of Westmount may finally be giving students and staff at Dawson College what they need - a crosswalk on de Maisonneuve Blvd. leading to Alexis Nihon. As Global's Amanda Jelowicki reports, some say speeding cars are a big problem.


MONTREAL – The main entrance to Dawson College isn’t on de Maisonneuve Blvd., but it certainly feels like it is.

Students and staff pass in and out all day long from the doorways that lead to the busy road.

Whether taking a break, or on a quick coffee run, they often head across the street into the Alexis Nihon shopping mall.

“Back and forth all day long it, never really ends,” said Kevin Slezak, Dawson Student Union chairperson.

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“There are always people trying to cross the street.”

The problem, though, is there isn’t a crosswalk, so it’s actually illegal for people to run across the boulevard.

“The two doors are aligned perfectly and it’s human nature. The shortest way between two points is the way you are going to take,” said Donna Varrica, Dawson College’s Communications Coordinator.

“I think we have been lucky that we haven’t had more injuries and possibly fatalities.”

In the past, the City of Westmount has said people need to cross at the lights at either ends of the boulevard, at the corner of Atwater and Wood Avenues.

This winter, the city’s traffic committee studied the issue and decided a crosswalk is necessary.

“Something will be put it place in September,” said Westmount city councillor Cynthia Lulham.

“It’s just a question of what type of crosswalk it will be.”

For 10 years, Dawson employee Kinga Breining has nervously crossed the street illegally.

Breining launched a petition; in one day, it garnered 800 signatures.

“On Chabanel [Street], there was a crosswalk installed after someone got killed,” said Breining.

“It seems like you have to have a major accident before something is done.”

The Dawson community found out about the upcoming crosswalk when informed by Global News Thursday afternoon.

“Everyone was very discouraged about the prospect of getting the crosswalk,” said Breining.

“I don’t think anyone knew this was coming so we are very excited to hear this news.”

© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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