Seems that Montreal City Weblob has commented here that she blogged about my blogging after Fagstein blogged that I blogged about the chain of reactions to Fagstein writing an article in The Gazette about Coolopolis who blogged about that prompting Montreal City Weblog to blog about that while I turned and blogged about that.
Archive for the ‘Other’ Category
Will be away for a few days and will return in the new year which looks to be very interesting around here.
May 2007 be a great year!
These types of sites are amongst the most interesting of all reclamation projects in the way that they incorporate aspects of the industry into the design.
However, there can be a downside to such projects as outlined in this essay called Brownfield Gentrification In Amsterdam.
Most people in most places will never accuse their governments of being holistically motivated when deciding to go ahead with such projects. Often the “character” of the city centre gets paved over by the incoming new proffesional class who do not wish to join the urban sprawl to the suburbs.
We have seen this to some extent with the “condoization” of the Lachine Canal in Montreal where an extraordinary postmodern blandness that “sprawls” outward from the canal has completely erased notions of “character”, “colourfulness”, and even the “individuality” of streets and neighborhoods.
The citizens of Pointe Saint Charles ( a working class district of Montreal) were able to effectively stop a huge Casino/Entertainment centre from being developed in the former shops of the Canadian National Railways yards there. The project partners were to be Loto-Quebec and Circue du Soleil, a rather curious mixture of art/culture with government sanctioned gambling.
Sometimes the locals actually win!
They decided to build a massive interchange that would be capable of handling traffic when the population is doubled over the next 20 years or so.
Here is a look at the constuction.
Clearly, they have given the project much condsideration including aesthetic concerns. For a cool video on this project go here
Superhospital already over budget, and nobody’s sure who’s paying for it
Expensive delays; Hospitals told to revise plans
AARON DERFEL, The Gazette
Published: Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Backhoes continue decontamination at the Glen Yard site of the future MUHC superhospital last month. Construction hasn’t begun, but already the hospital is expected to be $130 million over budget.
A shovel isn’t even in the ground yet and the McGill University Health Centre’s superhospital will cost at least $130 million more than original estimates.
Delays in getting the project under way, coupled with inflation, are behind the increase in costs, said Arthur Porter, executive director of the MUHC.
“The longer it takes, that (cost) goes up four per cent per year,” Porter said yesterday.
“That’s the biggest worry, because that’s the time cost of money. It’s very simple: The longer it takes, the more indexation is going to go up. Then there’s the question of (rising costs) of the skilled labour force, etc.”
When Quebec Health Minister Philippe Couillard approved the MUHC superhospital in July 2004, he capped spending at $1.1 billion.
Adjusting for inflation, the project will now cost at least $1.22 billion. The superhospital will be built at the site of the former Glen railway yard in the west end, replacing the Royal Victoria and Montreal Chest hospitals.
The future home of the Montreal Children’s Hospital will also be built at the Glen site. The Montreal General Hospital, on Cedar Ave., will be renovated and expanded.
Porter suggested that the government assume the added cost of inflation, because the MUHC has been ready to build for years now. He said that the MUHC’s budget for the Montreal General expansion and the construction at the Glen – excluding inflation – comes to $1.09 billion.
He said the MUHC has been very careful to avoid cost overruns, pointing out that the decontamination of the Glen has come 10 per cent under budget and a month ahead of schedule. The cost of decontamination was pegged at $28 million.
A mild winter and less contamination than expected means the MUHC will save $2.8 million. The site will be cleaned up by next month.
The Glen site was purchased for $18 million. The MUHC Foundation contributed $10 million. The balance is included in the $1.1-billion budget set by Quebec.
Isabelle Merizzi, press attache to Couillard, was non-committal yesterday on whether the government will pick up the extra inflation costs.
“At present, the government is actualizing the costs. That process must be completed before the government pronounces itself,” Merizzi said.
Still, the Charest government is committed to both the MUHC superhospital as well as a similar project by the Centre hospitalier de l’Universite de Montreal, she said.
CHUM officials have also indicated that their project will go up by at least $130 million to take into account inflation.
The government has appointed Clermont Gignac, a former Bombardier executive, to oversee the two projects. Gignac has told The Gazette that both MUHC and CHUM officials have been told to revise their plans because of concerns of that cost projections risked being exceeded by hundreds of millions of dollars.
Regardless of how the issue of indexation is resolved, taxpayers will ultimately be on the hook for tens of millions of dollars more than the MUHC estimate of $1.1 billion. That’s because there will be the extra costs of the roadwork involved, like building overpasses and refurbishing de Maisonneuve Blvd.
Porter said the MUHC will not pick up those costs.
© The Gazette (Montreal) 2006
Taken from a presentation by the NDG Community Council on
June 8, 2005
“We are generally in favor of the reconfiguration of the highway links planned to connect with the site, recognizing the importance of the principle of facilitating traffic entering the hospital site as quickly as possible following leaving highways. There are many related potential developments in NDG, which we believe need to be taken into consideration in order to develop the best traffic patterns. Amongst these are the Cavendish Boulevard Extension, the potential development of the Turcot Yards, the interest expressed by Wal-Mart in establishing themselves in the vicinity of St. Jacques and Cavendish, the likely redevelopment of the Trinity Memorial Church on Sherbrooke and Northcliffe Avenues (particularly critical if developed as a two-story Loblaws) and the added impact of traffic related to the new medical services which will likely arise in the immediate area. Each of these potential changes will have a ripple effect, impacting upon whatever changes take place to accommodate the hospital. We believe that the changes related to the hospital ought not to be determined piecemeal, but that the “bigpicture” be studied taking all these factors into account.”
Sherbrooke Street 2010?
At least it looks like they will have tree lined streets and convenient places to shop!
Here is a work by the very interesting local art group, SYN-atelier d’exploration urbaine.
“Starting off with the fact that residual space is produced and abandoned by contemporary urbanisation, that much of it will not be developed in a near future and, also, that many of these sites have spatial and landscape qualities favourable to temporary occupation, the first phase of the project Hypothèses d’amarrages (Mooring Hypothesis) proposes using picnic tables to squat an array of selected interstitial sites of the Montreal Metropolitan area. The intention of the intervention is to exploit the potential of these forgotten, trivialised or underused spaces to offer to urbanites new possibilities of interaction with the urban landscape. The picnic tables constitute here probes that witness the “spacing” to find and to exploit in the spatio-temporal system of the existing city.”
And from 2005
Interstice between two autoroute pillars in the vicinity of Gadbois recreational center and the Lachine Canal bike path
And for this particular project.
Here is a Gazette article from 2003 which gives an overview of all the interconnected projects that can, will, or might have some impact on the development of Turcot Yards.
Quebec buys Turcot Yard, interchange fix planned $17.8-million deal. Most to be sold for redevelopment; options studied for road network
PETER LANKEN and BRENDA BRANSWELL
Thursday, October 30, 2003
The provincial government has snapped up a huge, historic tract of land in a move that will dramatically affect Montreal motorists, residents and perhaps even hospital patients.
The Quebec Transport Department purchased most of the Turcot Yard – nine million square feet – from Canadian National Railway Co. on Sept. 25 for $17.8 million.
Synonymous with traffic gridlock for many Montreal motorists, the sprawling Turcot Yard along Highway 20 is larger than Mount Royal Park.
The department plans to invest $400 to $500 million in a major infrastructure overhaul, likely over six or seven years. The work will include fixing or re-building the Turcot interchange, reconfiguring the Angrignon overpass and possibly removing the Montreal West interchange.
However, the bulk of the Turcot Yard – about 80 per cent – will be sold for redevelopment, which might spark an economic boom and inflict more traffic headaches on motorists. One thing is certain: it will sharply change the west-end landscape.
“It’s huge investment,” said Paul-André Fournier, the regional director of Transport Quebec in Montreal. Putting the roadwork amount in perspective, Fournier noted that their budget this year for the entire province is $930 million.
“It’s an insurance for the future,” he said, citing a few reasons for the purchase.
One is the major work required on the interchange. While it poses no danger, Fournier said, scaling concrete is “getting older by the day.”
But it is also looking at re-building the interchange a level lower on landfill, which would require a lot more space, Fournier said. The purchase of the land would allow them to pursue that option, he said.
Transport Quebec is also exploring the possibility of reversing traffic on Highway 20 between the Turcot interchange and the Angrignon overpass. Now, the highway is an anomaly. Motorists heading west are on the left side of the 20 rather than the right side, which is the norm.
To do so would require relocating CN’s tracks within the yard, said Fournier, who listed it as another reason for the purchase.
If Transport Quebec fixes the highway direction, it would allow them to get rid of one level of the Turcot interchange and do away with the entire Montreal West interchange, Fournier said.
Traffic would only flow “marginally better,” he conceded. But it would lower their costs and be safer for motorists because the work would eliminate curves. “A structure costs a lot more money to maintain in the long run than landfill,” Fournier said.
Transport Quebec will studyits options and probably come to a decision about the interchange within two years, he said. “Re-building the Turcot interchange is a major investment.”
The future redevelopment of the land probably have a major impact on motorists, who already grapple with heavy congestion through the area.
The redevelopment is probably six or seven years away, Fournier said. However, some sections of the yard may be sold sooner once Transport Quebec confirms its plans for the site.
As the landowners, Fournier said, Transport Quebec will be able to plan access to the yard.
The Angrignon overpass will have to be reconfigured before any development, he said. “As it is now, it is saturated. And it can not even meet the present demand.”
Fournier said the government’s purchase was not motivated by plans for a McGill University Health Centre superhospital at the nearby Glen Yards. Access by motorists to the superhospital site has been raised as a concern.
Transport Quebec is in talks with the city of Montreal and with MUHC officials about “how we can serve both the Glen Yards and the Turcot Yards,” he said.
Transport Quebec must also deal with the contaminated soil on the site. Fournier said severe pollution is “fairly limited, so we can probably manage it fairly easily.” He estimated it would cost a maximum of $5 million to deal with the problem.
As for the roadwork that motorists can expect in the future, Fournier insisted: “I think we’re getting better and better at traffic management.”
© Copyright 2003 Montreal Gazette
Now we are better prepared to understand how
A) A Superhospital can be built at the former Glen Yards site that will not cause extensive traffic congestion in the area because Pullman Street (runs the northern length of Turcot Yards) can be accessed and/or a new ramp from Turcot Interchange will be put in place.
B) The Turcot Interchange needs rennovating so why not redesign it? It could be dropped a tier and sit atop some landfill while also providing new ramps to the Superhospital and the soon to be developed Turcot Yards. (That suggested paint job is looking real good now!).
C) The Angrignon Interchange needs to be redesigned in order to ease traffic flow in and out of Lasalle. This would also improve access to the redeveloped Turcot Yards and create a link between NDG and Lasalle and Lachine. In any case this work will not start before 2009.
D) The Turcot Yards will be 80% sold for industrial and commerical use. Access has always been a huge problem there. Pullman Street already provides an east-west passage and access will be greatly improved when the Angrignon and Turcot Interchanges have been redesigned and completed.
and certainly of some significance though not mentioned above is
F) A rapid transit system is desired as a link between Pierre Elliot Trudeau International and Downtown Montreal. It is very difficult to imagine any proposed route that does not go through Turcot Yards if its not a more northern CP line. And there is always the much needed redesign of the Dorval Circle, but that is another story.
Do the people behind all these projects even know of each other?
Well I ve just recently walked the length and breadth of Turcot and there just isnt anything happening at all.
It looks like it may be a few years before there is any developement of the Turcot land.
THere is the superhospital yet to be built up at the Glen Yards and probably some kind of special route or “shuttle ” lane will be added to the 20 for high speed access between downtown and Pierre Trudeau International.
I really cant see any one wanting to build on Turcot with out knowing first what the road links are going to be.
got another email from Whiny Dancer.
You have likely noticed that the decontamination process has been
progressing steadily since last spring.
Now,thanks to Mother Nature and fewer contaminants than originally
anticipated,we are happy to announce that the process
is almost complete.
We’re also pleased that our contractors have come in under budget
,a testament to their conscientiousness and professionalism.
However,in order to finish up the northwest portion, we must unfortunately
cut a tree that faces Crowley Street. As we realize tree
cutting is always a sensitive issue, we’d like to share with
you why the removal is necessary.
- The earth found beneath and around the tree is contaminated.
- It’s the last section of decontamination,and
-The work to enlarge Decarie Boulevard makes
it an inevitability.
The good news in all of this is that we’ve found a way to give this old tree
permanent roots on our Glen Campus site.
We have entrusted its future life to the Association des
Ebenistes du Quebec, which will remove it, preserve it and create a sculpture that
will grace the Glen Campus for years to come. Naturally, we also plan to have
considerable green space on the campus and therefore more trees will be planted.
In fact, an overall green approach has been adopted from the get go.
We’ve saved potable water by collecting rainwater for site use throuout summer
and fall andrecycled more than 95% of materials, including railway ties, metals, and concrete.
These initiatives form part of a greater voluntary effort to meet internationally
recognized environmental protection and performance standards that will lead to energy-efficient
buildins, green roofs,etc.
Rest assured that all necessary steps were and will continue
to be taken in terms of communications and permits with the
Borough and the city. Please don’t hesitate to contact
us should you wish more information.
Our dedicated community line is : (514)934-8317
Finally, allow us to take this opportunity to thank you
for your patience during the initial Glen Campus work and
to wish you and yours a happy, healthy New Year.
The MUHC Planning Team
McGill University Health Centre