Laval long-term plans to beautify its bridge entrances

Lachapelle Bridge and Pont-Viau entrances are in the city’s sights

Laval has long-term plans to beautify its bridge entrances
The City of Laval wants to reconfigure the intersection of des Laurentides and Cartier boulevards.

Martin C. Barry

As part of a long-term effort to beautify Laval’s bridge entrances, the City of Laval is holding public consultations on proposed changes to the Lachapelle Bridge entrance in Chomedey, des Laurentides Blvd. in Pont-Viau and Curé-Labelle Blvd. in Sainte-Rose.

Public consultations

The city held one of the first of a planned series of consultations on May 9, when around 200 residents of Pont-Viau and Laval-des-Rapides came out to École Léon-Guilbault for a presentation on a proposed reconfiguration of the intersection of Cartier and des Laurentides boulevards, a short distance from the Pont Viau bridge.

While the city wants to undertake a similar reconfiguration in Chomedey where Curé Labelle widens and leads towards the Lachapelle Bridge, the des Laurentides reconfiguration is more complex due to a large number of old and narrow streets that feed into the Cartier/des Laurentides intersection.

Laval has long-term plans to beautify its bridge entrances
About 200 people attended the City of Laval’s consultation on the Pont-Viau entrance to Laval last week.

Former city hall demolition

While major work for the Cartier/des Laurentides project won’t get underway until 2021, the city is planning expropriations and demolitions in the area. Among other things, for example, the days are numbered for the landmark former Laval-des-Rapides city hall building, which is now being used as a municipal courthouse.

The city plans to rebuild a new municipal court building a little further to the south on Quimper St. by 2022. All the same, the city plans to carry this all out over a period of up to 20 years. The city also wants developers to become involved with proposals of their own.

Other changes coming

The city’s urban planners are also keeping in mind the historic character along side streets like St-Hubert, where houses which were part of the original village of Laval-des-Rapides still stand. And they want to eliminate some of the more unsightly aspects at the Pont-Viau/des Laurentides entrance, such as the steel barrier that runs up the middle of the street, which was initially installed to prevent pedestrians from crossing into the dangerous flow of high-speed traffic.

In an interview with the Laval News, Mayor Marc Demers said the city also has plans for Laval’s Lachapelle Bridge entrance along Chomedey Blvd. “It’s another goal of ours,” he said.

Laval has long-term plans to beautify its bridge entrances
The days are numbered for the former Laval-des-Rapides city hall, which is set to be demolished to make way for a new municipal court house.

Careful approach, says mayor

“But we have so many challenges that we have to proceed while being careful about what we can accomplish. We decided that Pont-Viau was one of the priorities, Chomedey and Curé-Labelle Blvd. is another, and we are also working on projects in Saint-Rose and Vieux St-Vincent-de-Paul.”

Demers confirmed that one of the challenges the city faces is the fact that a number of private properties lie within the path where Laval wants to renew and redevelop. He said that in Pont-Viau alone, the city has served expropriation notices to some owners and is negotiating with others.

Will take money

“Obviously, money is necessary for all this,” he noted, while adding that the City of Laval is currently in the midst of another major renewal undertaking: the Val-Martin social housing project, for which the city received millions of dollars from Quebec City and Ottawa.

According to the mayor, a public consultation like the one held in Laval-des-Rapides/Pont-Viau will also be held in Chomedey for Lachapelle Bridge/Chomedey Blvd. recnofiguration project.