Here is about the best shot of Turcot Yards and it’s surroundings you are ever likely to see. It is taken from this page by the City Of Montreal that takes a look at it’s 10 Ecoterritories.
The length of Turcot is somewhat compressed here. For anyone who is interested it takes about 40 minutes to walk from the Turcot Interchange in the backgrouind to the Angrignon Overpass in the foreground, providing you don’t stop to check anything out.
From this page the City says in relation to it’s green policies, “Montréal, a city which has lost 75 hectares of wood each year over the past decade, became the first municipality in Québec to adopt a policy to protect and enhance natural habitats in December 2004.”Seems like a damage control statement to me as the city’s record on allowing development into “protected” areas is a joke. In fact, aerial photography of the island in 1988 showed that depletion of “green cover” was already past the “boiling” point. Despite some glossy rhetoric and the creation of the Ecoterritories- all of which have been severely encroached upon by development in recent decades- the current admistration appears to be as insensitive to the reality of the need for the redevelopement of the island as a healthy, sustainable, environment as were administrations past.
I look at the picture above and it is not too hard to imagine how it once may have been with the Riviere Saint Pierre running the length of Turcot and Otter Lake where the Interchange now is. I see how the Falaise Saint Jacques (the green strip that runs the north side of Turcot Yards) can connect with the Lachine Canal (A bike/pedestrain crossing over highway 20) and the neighborhoods of NDG ( the road already exists!) on the left, not to mention Saint Henri which lays beyond the Interchange. There is a tremendous opportunity for Montreal to join the rest of the world by going “Sustainable” at Turcot Yards.
This year Walking Turcot Yards is going to place more emphasis on the Falaise Saint Jacques and look at ideas, people, and creative solutions for Turcot Yards.