Citizens mobilize for bike path
Article mis en ligne le mercredi 23 juin 2010
While groups of citizens are mobilizing around improvements to the bike path that will link up the Glenn Campus with other neighbourhoods, the consortium hired for the McGill University Health Centre was holding its groundbreaking ceremony.
But it appears that not a cent of the 90 million dollars put aside to build the road infrastructure around the largest hospital project in Canada will be in support of a June 2010 opportunity study ordered by 2nd Opposition.
The reason is simple, according to Concertation Interquartier (CIQ) member Gillian Keefe. “What probably happened is they had to focus their energy more on the tangible infrastructure of the hospital and less on the linking it up with the other neighbourhoods.”
The study looks into the linking of the bicycle path from de Maisonneuve between Addington and the Vendome metro station using the residual spaces along de Maisonneuve and part of the disused limit of the CP railway.
NDG councillor Peter McQueen said the community groups had just gotten hold of the consortium’s changed plan and it took a while before a closer look and reactions were registered. Now construction has started and the layout still needs be redrawn, he says.
It turns out that the campus will be moved far back from the Vendome metro station and separated by a parking lot. The bike path will definitely be there, but not where proponents in the community think it should be.
“Proper linking up with the neighbourhoods is important and we have yet to figure out if there is still any willingness to redraw the plan,” said Gillian Keefe.
Under the new traffic plan, the configuration at the busy Decarie intersection is going to go from a five-way to a four-way stop, which will bring some improvement, but do little to redirect cyclists or improve safety.
Borough director Stephane Plante had never seen or officially received the study when Les Actualités contacted him to verify if the borough has any interest in it.
At this point, the CIQ and the proponents of the bicycle path are not happy with the proposed plan and are wondering if the City and governments officials can muster the willingness to carry out lengthy negotiations with CP and residents along the rail line. The CP overpass will be completely rebuilt as part of the MUHC’s development plan.