Pedestrian-only streets are back in Montreal, but no new ones will be added this year
Pedestrian-only streets are back for another summer in Montreal, but people hoping the concept would be expanded to other parts of the city will have to wait.
Last year, the city announced a three-year plan for pedestrian-only streets.
On Tuesday, Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante unveiled the list of 10 streets that will be included this summer. It is identical to the one from last year:
Mount Royal Avenue between Saint-Laurent Boulevard and Fullum Street, from May 20 and Sept. 5.
Wellington Street between 6th Avenue and Regina Street, from June 5 to Sept. 18.
Ste-Catherine Street East between Saint-Hubert Street and Papineau Avenue, from May 19 to Oct. 16.
Ste-Catherine Street West, from St-Laurent Boulevard to de Bleury Street as well as Clark Street, from de Montigny Street to the loading dock of the Maison du développement durable, from May 1 to Oct. 31.
Ontario Street East between Pie-IX Boulevard and Darling Street, from June 19 to Sept. 9.
Duluth Avenue East between Saint-Laurent Boulevard and Saint-Hubert Street, from June 19 to Sept. 5.
St-Denis Street from Sherbrooke Street East to de Maisonneue Boulevard (including Émery Street), from June 1 to Sept. 30.
Place du Marché-du-Nord (Jean-Talon Market), between Casgrain and Henri-Julien avenues, from June 1 to Oct. 15.
Bernard Avenue between Wiseman and Bloomfield avenues, from May 18 to Oct. 9.
de Castelnau Street East between St-Denis Street and de Gaspé Avenue, from May 8 to Oct. 10.
During Tuesday's announcement, Montreal's mayor lauded the benefits of pedestrian-only streets, including the boost it provides to the local economy.
"They also create a sense of community for the people that live in the area," Plante said. "They also become destinations for tourists, visitors and students."
When asked why the project wasn't expanded, Plante said the city has a three-year agreement with local merchants' associations to include the 10 streets this year and next. Beyond that, she said the city is open to including other streets, but stressed that making streets pedestrian-only is not easy.
"Although it seems easy, maybe, to do a pedestrian street, we need to be very cautious and think about public transportation as well," the mayor said, using Mount Royal Avenue and Wellington Street as examples of places where a plan must be made to ensure people can still take a bus.
"We love pedestrian streets," Plante said. "There still has to be this global plan, including also the construction sites which is a reality in Montreal."