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CDN-NDG | Year in review: 2013

CDN-NDG | Year in review: 2013

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Busy NDG intersection spurs debate at superhospital meeting
NDG residents voiced their concerns at a McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) public meeting about the city’s plans to demolish the Upper Lachine underpass and revamp the Decarie/de Maisonneuve intersection. NDG councillor Peter McQueen presented a petition signed by a thousand local residents and merchants urging the city to keep Upper Lachine open, at least until work on St. Jacques is completed.

CDN community wants a new inclusive neighbourhood
CDN community groups reiterated their position concerning the future development of the former Blue Bonnets site. They asked the City of Montreal, which owns the land, to commit to building at least 2500 social housing units, which they have been requesting since 2005, on the 43-hectare site.


Funding urgently needed for Vendome station
Borough council passed a unanimous resolution asking the Quebec government to provide the necessary funding to link the Vendôme intermodal bus/metro/train station to the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC). Snowdon councillor Marvin Rotrand fears that the hospital campus will open before a second tunnel is built to adequately link the MUHC to public transit.

Borough invests in parks and sports equipment
The borough will be investing an extra $2.7 million in parks and sports equipment by the end of 2013. An extra $10.5M will go to various installations managed by central services. Swimming pool renovations, improvements to wading pools and track and field corridors, and the purchase of urban furniture are examples of where the money will go.


CDN/NDG gymnastics club loses gym
The gymnastics club that has been operating out of the Snowdon Theatre for more than 20 years will have to look elsewhere for space, as the borough is planning to sell the building because of its dilapidated state, with necessary renovations estimated at half a million dollars.


Borough fights against unsightly donation boxes
Borough administrators and politicians are taking measures to control the proliferation of clothing donation boxes so that they don’t impact negatively on the quality of life in local neighbourhoods. “It’s a real epidemic,” said borough director Stéphane Plante. “We’re taking it very seriously.”


Government quashes “Pastagate” fears
PQ language minister Diane De Courcy says that restaurant owners need no longer be afraid of getting in trouble for using “international words” that everybody understands, like pasta, souvlaki, bulgogi, or mutter paneer. Snowdon councillor Marvin Rotrand had written to the minister to remind her that CDN-NDG contains “very multicultural neighbourhoods with restaurants representing lots of minorities and different cuisines.”


Anglos want more jobs in the public service
More than 100 citizens attended a June 10 public meeting hosted by Snowdon councillor Marvin Rotrand in Côte-des-Neiges to discuss the perceived underrepresentation of anglophones working for the City of Montreal. The night consisted of a panel discussion followed by a question-and-answer session with the public.


Moving day crowds SPCA
Each year around July 1, thousands of household pets are left behind by their owners. Côte-des-Neiges–NDG is one of the boroughs that can use the SPCA on Jean-Talon, which sees the number of animals it receives triple every year in the months surrounding moving day. “We get about 1600 animals a month during this period of the year,” said Alanna Devine, the Montreal SPCA’s director of animal advocacy.


Residents ask for safer railway transportation
Rail transportation is raising a number of concerns for residents in the CDN-NDG borough since the Lac-Mégantic tragedy. Some citizens asked officials at the council meeting to find solutions, as traffic on the two railway crossings in the borough is bound to increase over the next few years.

Filipino community flourishing through basketball
Every Tuesday night the Philippine Basketball Association of Montreal (PBAM) hosts practices and scrimmages for Filipino youth at the Centre Sportif Côte-des-Neiges gym on Van Horne. The Filipino community has long been uniting through its love for basketball. “In the ’70s and ’80s, every Filipino in Montreal was living in Côte-des-Neiges,” said one of the founders, Jake Maguigad.


Reserved bus lanes not everyone’s cup of tea
The reserved bus lanes on Sherbrooke St. West will soon be up and running, to be enjoyed by 18,000 passengers, 13,000 of them from the borough, but the solution is not one that pleases everyone. Finding parking in the east is going from bad to worse, said resident Karen Urtnowski at the CDN-NDG council meeting. In the whole area between Sherbrooke and de Maisonneuve, there is only one block with parking permits for residents.


Projet Montréal’s vision for Blue Bonnets
During the election campaign Projet Montréal outlined its proposals for developing the former racetrack into a green urban community. Party leader Richard Bergeron called for a neighbourhood that will better serve the needs of young families, with more 3-bedroom houses, condos, rental units,

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housing coops, non-profit buildings and social housing suitable for a dense urban environment.

NDG YMCA going back to the drawing board
The NDG YMCA drew more than 200 people to consultations held at the end of September. “The status quo is not an option,” said Daniel Tierney, director of development for the YMCAs of Quebec. “We want to continue to serve the community as we have for the past 72 years.”


Searle wins council seat in Loyola
The last time Jeremy Searle sat on Montreal’s city council was eight years ago. Gérald Tremblay was still the mayor of Montreal and Michael Applebaum was in his third year as borough mayor of Côte-des-Neiges—Notre-Dame-de-Grâce. “I think today’s council is far more encouraging than previous ones. It’s good that it’s a mixed bag,” said Searle, newly elected as an independent in the Loyola district.

Coalition Montréal reigns over Côte-des-Neiges–NDG
Nearly 39% of registered voters took part in this year’s municipal election in Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, electing former Liberal MNA Russell Copeman as new borough mayor. Copeman, running under the Coalition Montréal-Marcel Côté banner, garnered 29 % of the vote. Projet Montréal’s Michael Simkin finished in second place with 26%, followed by Vrai Changement pour Montréal’s Andrew Ross in third and Équipe Denis Coderre’s Kevin Copps in fourth.


Gentrification a borough problem?
Some tenants were forced out of their apartments at 4840 Bourret Ave. by major renovations done by the landlord, apparently to convert the apartment building into condominiums. “What will you do to make sure that this does not happen again to anyone, and how can we stop the conversion of reasonably priced housing units into pricey condominiums?” asked Kurt Ross at the December 9 borough Council meeting.

Couillard wins Outremont byelection
Quebec Liberal Party leader Philippe Couillard will be in the National Assembly when it resumes sitting on Feb. 11 after winning 55% of the vote in the traditionally Liberal riding. “The PQ government destroyed our economy because of their own actions or lack of actions and has divided Quebec like never before,” said Couillard.

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