The City of Montreal is one step closer to making the much-anticipated Parc de la falaise a reality.
Public consultations gave the project the green-light last year and now the city has put a reserve on a 1.8-kilometre stretch of land between the Saint-Jacques Escarpment and Notre-Dame Street.
“We gave the status of a park to this field and we are going to try to have an agreement with private owners,” said Montreal city councillor and executive committee member Robert Beaudry, referring to a small portion of the land at the park’s north-end entrance that still needs to be purchased.
“It’s going to be a new green space between the boroughs of Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce and the Sud-Ouest.”
The 60-hectare nature park will sit on the eco-territory of the Saint-Jacques Escarpment, and will include wetlands and wooded areas open to the public.
Montreal’s public consultation commission ruled in favour of the project in June 2019 and suggested that a pedestrian walkway over the Turcot Interchange be included with a “unique, innovative and emblematic look.”
The city’s elected official responsible for parks insists the overpass will be part of the plan but details will come at a later date.
“The link is absolutely on the table for the next step,” said Beaudry.
Environmental groups have been calling for the land to be preserved for decades. The escarpment is one of 10 eco-territories identified by the City of Montreal in its nature conservation plan.
Montreal’s mayor insists moving forward with the plan during the COVID-19 pandemic is no coincidence.
“Right now more than ever, we understand the importance of offering Montrealers green spaces,” said Valérie Plante in a statement.
“The project falls within our efforts to attain 10% of protected land on a local level and is in line with our support of the United Nations project Decade of Ecosystem Restoration.”