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Montreal compost plant project gets green light despite concerns

A $175-million contract to build an organic waste treatment centre on the island of Montreal has been approved. REMY GABALDA/AFP/Getty Images

A $175-million contract to build an organic waste treatment centre on the island of Montreal has been approved despite opposition from the mayors of demerged municipalities.

Beny Masella, the mayor of Montreal West and the president of the Association of Suburban Municipalities, had asked for more time from the City of Montreal for elected officials to consider the contract.

READ MORE: West end Montreal mayors challenge city’s $175M compost plant project

The agglomeration council, which is composed of more members of the city of Montreal than the mayors of the 15 demerged cities, gave the contract the green light on Thursday.

“We made a motion to delay the vote until next meeting. We lost that vote,” Masella told Global News on Friday.

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The city had offered to go over the file with the concerned mayors, but only an hour before Thursday’s vote. Masella and the mayors of Saint-Laurent and Baie-D’Urfé had expressed concerns over rising costs.

For its part, the city has staunchly defended its composting plant in the Saint-Laurent borough that has been in the works for more than a decade. The original cost of the project was pegged at $46 million.

WATCH: Composting questions raised at Montreal city hall

Click to play video: 'Composting Questions at Montreal City Hall' Composting Questions at Montreal City Hall
Composting Questions at Montreal City Hall – Feb 25, 2019

Earlier in the week, the executive member responsible for the file, Jean-Francois Parenteau, said the $175-million contract was the best price available.

“The original evaluation was too low, but now that we know the costs, we think it is a good amount for this kind of project,” said Parenteau on Monday.

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The St-Laurent plant is the first of five organic waste treatment facilities that are set to be built on the island of Montreal.

— With files from Global’s Elysia Bryan-Baynes

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