At Cassandra Wallace’s apartment on Cazalais Street in Montreal’s Saint-Henri borough, it’s a constant battle against dust.
She lives directly across from the Turcot Interchange construction site and doesn’t bother washing the windows because they are always getting covered in dirt.
Grime cakes her car, windowsills and anything left outside.
Fresh air, Wallace said, is a luxury.
“We haven’t opened the windows in about a year because the dust is unbearable,” she said, adding that she’s thinking of moving away.
Jess Segura moved to the neighbourhood at the end of the summer.
In just a few months, she’s noticed a big difference.
“I’ll wake up in the morning, go outside and I’ll see dust on all the cars,” she said.
“If there’s a bus driving by, I’ll just get this gust of dust basically hitting me in the face.”
Both Segura and Wallace said they’ve developed coughs and breathing issues.
Many residents had hoped the dust would settle after the summer – but it hasn’t.
“Now that people are back to their fall routines, there’s intense traffic through the neighbourhood,” said Derek Robertson from the Good Neighbours Committee.
Residents expect things will only get worse when the Ville-Marie Expressway closes later this month.
Robertson explained the detoured traffic coming off Angrignon and heading through Saint-Henri will add to the dirt and noise.
“People leaving from the West Island are still coming through this way and it’s going to create a lot of difficulty for us going forward,” he said.
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