Heated sidewalks may not be part of Sainte-Catherine Street facelift

Click to play video: 'Montreal’s Sainte-Catherine Street getting a facelift'
Montreal’s Sainte-Catherine Street getting a facelift
WATCH ABOVE: Major construction is set to begin on Sainte-Catherine Street in downtown Montreal. Global's Dan Spector reports – Jan 4, 2018

Major construction is set to begin on Sainte-Catherine Street in downtown Montreal Monday.

The long-awaited makeover for one of the city’s key commercial arteries will last until the mid 2020s.

READ MORE: Montreal’s Sainte-Catherine Street to be re-imagined – but how?

“The work is set to replace water pipes, some are over 100 years old,” said Robert Beaudry, Montreal Executive Committee member responsible for economic development.

“It’s going to be a huge construction site and we want to take this opportunity to transform the street configuration to increase the consumer experience as well.”

The city is planning for wider sidewalks, new lighting and more seating areas.

Former Mayor Denis Coderre had intended to install heated sidewalks as well, but Valérie Plante‘s administration doesn’t seem too hot on the idea.

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Montreal's Sainte-Catherine Street at the corner Peel on May 13, 2015. Tim Sargeant/Global News
Montreal's Sainte Catherine Street re-imagined. City of Montreal handout

They say the technology hasn’t worked well at Place Vauquelin in Old Montreal, and is too expensive.

“We’re going to see for the warm sidewalks, but it could go out of the plan,” Beaudry told Global News.

The first phase of the construction will be between Mansfield and de Bleury streets.

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Construction will be done section by section so the whole stretch isn’t closed all at once.

READ MORE: Steve’s Music Store set to move to Sainte-Catherine Street

“I think it’s going to be tough for us,” said Benami Karima of Jannat Souvenirs.

Work will last for about two years.

“It’s great for the future, but you have to make it through those two years first,” said Abby Craig of Pappa Roti Café.

The city plans to compensate businesses affected by construction.

Construction is set to take place on Montreal's Sainte-Catherine Street between Mansfield and De Bleury Streets. The City of Montreal handout
The stretch of road to be redone along Sainte -Catherine Street in Montreal lies between Mansfield and De Bleury Streets, eventually continuing up to Atwater Avenue. City of Montreal handout

“We’re working on a plan to give compensation, but it’s not going to be only on Sainte-Catherine Street, it will be all over Montreal,” said Beaudry.

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READ MORE: Major changes ahead for Montreal’s Sainte-Catherine Street

The plan now is to redo Phillips Square and Place du Frère André before starting on  Sainte-Catherine Street, between Atwater Avenue and Mansfield Street.

Plante is expected to announce her administration’s revised version of the revitalization plan on Jan. 15.

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