REMINDER: consultations on the Montreal General Hospital's new expansion project
2011-06-02

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Photo: Ville de Montréal


INFORMATION SESSION ON THE NEW EXPANSION PROJECT OF THE MONTREAL GENERAL HOSPITAL

On Monday, June 6, 2011, the Office de consultation publique de Montréal will be holding an information session on the new proposal to expand the Montreal General Hospital.

The hospital’s expansion is significant for both the mountain and this sector of the city. Moreover, the project is part of the greater reorganization of the McGill University Health Centre that includes major changes to the Royal Victoria Hospital and the Shriner’s Hospital for Children, both slated to move to the Glen campus.

Therefore, the expansion of the “Mountain Campus” is part of a greater context.

Les amis de la montagne invites the community to participate in the public consultations to be held in June to learn more about the project and to take advantage of this opportunity to express opinions on the different challenges this dossier represents.

Information session at the OCPM:


Information concerning the project on the site of the OCPM  (in French).:


Other important dates:

June 22: registration deadline for oral and written opinions (www.ocpm.qc.ca/inscription)
June 27: public hearing at 7 p.m.


CHRONOLOGY OF PROJECTS IN THE SOUTHWEST SECTOR OF THE MOUNTAIN, 1999-2011


1999

Adoption of a by-law authorizing the construction of a three-storey residential property with the same characterization as the other buildings on 1750 Avenue Cedar.

2000

Heenan Commission (1) consultations on the reuse of the MUHC’s existing buildings in light of the redeployment and concentration of facilities on the former Glen Yards site.

2003

May: second version of the residential project slated for 1750 Avenue Cedar comprising the construction of a residential building 4-6 stories in height.

September: opening of a register to allow a referendum in the Ville-Marie Borough on the council’s resolution approving the project at 1750 Avenue Cedar. The required number of signatures is attained.

December: The MUHC announces its redeployment project. The Glen campus is to be developed, but so is the Mountain Campus site (Montreal General Hospital).

2004

April: the developer presents a third version of the residential project slated for 1750 Avenue Cedar.

September: opening a register to allow a referendum in the Ville-Marie Borough on the council’s resolution approving the project. The required number of signatures is attained.

October: an « Open House » is held on the fourth version of the residential project proposed by the developer at 1750 Avenue Cedar.

2005

Adoption by the Conseil des ministres of the decree creating the Mount Royal Historic and Natural District.

2008

October: signature of a development agreement between the Ville de Montréal and the MUHC stipulating that following the currently proposed expansion project on the site of the Mountain Campus, future needs of the hospital will be redirected to the Glen Campus.

January: the MUHC signs the Mount Royal Pacte patrimonial.

Announcement of public consultations on the expansion project of the (2) of the Mountain Campus.

2009

May: public consultations by the OCPM on the residential project proposed for the site of the former Sulpicians’ philosophy seminary located at 3880 Chemin de la Côte-des-Neiges.

2011

Public consultations are announced on the new expansion project (3) proposed for the Mountain Campus. The MUHC has acquired the building located at 1750 Avenue Cedar with the intention to integrate it into the campus development.



(1)    The Heenan Report produced a series of conclusions following the public consultations in 2001 that remain relevant today. Herewith an extract (pp. 35-36):

(…) we wish to pay special attention to the Mount Royal Park as the Montreal General Hospital, the Royal Victoria Hospital, the Allan Memorial and the Montreal Neurological Hospital buildings are contiguous to it.

The Consultative Committee is of the opinion that any reuse project of these buildings must be conceived to assure a better interface, a better permeability between the city and the park. This can be done by the addition of points of access for the public by paths for pedestrians and cyclists, by signage and by return to the park of certain areas presently occupied by parking lots (especially for the Royal Victoria Hospital) as additional green space.

It goes without saying that no project should be authorized on these lands, nor an addition permitted that would have the effect of increasing the physical or visual obstacles between the park and the city.

(2)    Following the public consultations held by the OCPM in 2008, several recommendations issued by the Commission are also worth noting:

The fundamental issue, beyond the Montreal General Hospital’s expansion project, is the long-term protection of Mount Royal. And this issue brings us to examine the municipal strategy intended to protect and enhance Mount Royal. For in order to pass judgement on the Montreal General Hospital’s expansion project, the Commission must reflect upon the approach proposed by the Ville de Montréal with regards institutional properties, such as those of the MUHC.

Each project presented could be deemed acceptable in isolation, but the cumulative impact of all the projects could prove disastrous for Mount Royal. In other words, the municipal approach does not provide long-term guarantees susceptible to reassuring the population, which has claimed efficient measures to protect the collective heritage that is Mount Royal. Each time, to avoid the worst outcome, we are tempted to consent to the least.


(3)    The Conseil du patrimoine de Montréal provided an opinion in January, 2011, on the Montreal General Hospital’s new expansion project (p. 5):

The Conseil du patrimoine understands the (hospital’s) major challenges and appreciates that the project has been revised, which has allowed for the improvement of the project, most notably with regards to interior parking. Nonetheless, the council is left with the impression that the proposals have been developed without any veritable planning of the whole and in the absence of a long-term vision. In fact, the proposed landscaping plans do not seem to reply to any well-defined objectives. The same absence of a global strategy seems to exist with regards to the choice of materials to be used in the new constructions. For example, each element of the project seems to have been considered in isolation without regard to a more general objective of consolidating the identity of the hospital campus. In addition, the council wonders what is to become of the site should other needs for space be required at a later date. Will these additions be integrated in the MGH’s property? Will other, adjacent properties be acquired?

For more information about the forum, contact Firoozeh Djavedani, community relations coordinator, at 514 843-8240, ext. 241.

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