Welcome to Les amis' newsletter - December 2008
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INVITATION TO THE PUBLIC FORUM
- Wednesday, December 3 at 5:30 p.m. at the Shriners Hospital for Children
- New park planned for the northern summit?
- Sale of the former Marianopolis College
- Mountain biking in Montreal–project update
- Bravo to our volunteers of the Environmental Stewardship Program
- The National Geographic Society wants to know your top picks for Montreal
- Peter A. Howlett, C.M., is named to the Academy of Great Montrealers
- Guided snowshoe walks at night – make your group reservations now!
- Welcome to Isabelle Hudon and Rémi Racine, honorary co-chairs of the Tuques Bleues Celebration, 2009 edition
INVITATION TO THE PUBLIC FORUM
The next public forum will be held Wednesday, December 3 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Shriners Hospital for Children, located at 1529 Cedar Avenue.
Photo: Ville de Montréal
What does the future hold for the Shriners property and the other hospital properties on the mountain?
The Shriners Hospital was built on the southern flank of the mountain in 1925 to provide orthopaedic care to children whose families could not afford the care otherwise. Due to a shortage of space and the fact that expansion on the existing site is not possible, the hospital plans to leave its current property on Cedar Avenue to build anew on the Glen site.
A guided tour of the Shriners Hospital will be provided, followed by a discussion with special guests on the future of hospital properties on the mountain. For more information, please contact François-Xavier Caron
, public forum coordinator.
New park planned for the northern summit?
The 2009 municipal budget announced the creation of a park on the mountain’s northern summit.
Since 1986, Les amis de la montagne have advocated for the protection and enhancement of this “forgotten” summit, located in Outremont that is the least known by the community due to the absence of any formal landscaping or public access points. Les amis will follow the progress of this announcement with great interest.
Sale of the former Marianopolis College
The Gentlemen of Saint-Sulpice have sold their property located at 3880 Chemin de la Côte-des-Neiges, the former location of Marianopolis College. Property developers Tony Miceli and Carlo Bizzotto have purchased the site with plans to construct a significant residential project. The area is currently zoned institutional and is occupied in part by St. George’s School and The Study. Les amis de la montagne met with the developers in order to sensitize them to the mountain’s protection challenges. The project will eventually be submitted for public consultation.
Mountain biking in Montreal: Towards finding paths to sustainable solutions
More than a year has passed since Les amis de la montagne launched their project concerning mountain biking in Montreal with the participation of a working group on this issue. Les amis’ Conservation Patrol led an awareness-raising campaign between June and October, where contact was made with close to 4,000 people. In order to arrive at concrete sustainable solutions, there is no question that alternatives to Mount Royal must be found for the mountain biking community. A working group of representatives from the cycling community has been formed to look for alternative sites on the island and Les amis will continue to follow the project.
Bravo to our volunteers of the Environmental Stewardship Program
The 2008 edition of Les amis de la montagne’s Environmental Stewardship Program was a resounding success thanks to the participation of 1,082 volunteers who rolled up their sleeves to carry out a variety of tasks for the benefit of Mount Royal.
More than 2,300 hours of time and energy were devoted to the mountain territory between May and October, with the following formidable results:
- 460 volunteers planted 1,470 indigenous trees and shrubs in Mount Royal Park and on the property of the Université de Montréal. These plantings serve to sustain the natural regeneration of the forest, diversify the age classifications of the trees and reduce the number of exotic invasive species.
- 68% of the indigenous trees and shrubs planted have survived since 2003, according to follow-up studies on the survival rates and growth of plantings, an encouraging result for a territory under tremendous urban pressures.
- 40% of Mount Royal Park benefited from litter pick-up activities with a total of 100 bags of garbage collected during the traditional Corvée this year, despite the heavy rain.
- More than 2.5 tonnes of stems, branches and saplings from exotic invasive species were cut down on Mount Royal as part of a research project led by Les amis de la montagne in collaboration with the Ville de Montréal and a scientific committee.
The detailed results of the program will be available shortly on our website under the heading “Conservation Activities.”
The National Geographic Society wants to know your top picks for Montreal
Montreal became the first city in the world to sign the National Geographic Center for Sustainable Destination’s Geotourism Charter in 2007! Geotourism is tourism that sustains or enhances the geographic character of a place, its environment, culture, aesthetics, heritage, and the well being of its residents.
By having signed this Charter, and to promote Montreal as a sustainable destination on the international scene, a working group in Montreal, including Les amis de la montagne and the National Geographic Society, are in the process of producing a tourism Mapguide of the island.
The National Geographic Society wants to know your favourite Montreal picks. Visit the website geomontreal.com
before January 15, 2009, in order to nominate your choice attraction, place, activity or treasure on the mountain, in Montreal or your neighbourhood. Your choice just might be selected one of the 200 favourites to be included in the Montreal and National Geographic Society tourism Mapguide.
Peter A. Howlett, C.M. is named to the Academy of Great Montrealers
Peter A. Howlett, C.M., founding president of Les amis de la montagne, was named to the Academy of Great Montrealers by the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal on October 29, together with Heather Munroe-Blum, Denise Robert and Rémi Marcoux. Each year, the Academy honours four well-known Montreal personalities. Their contribution to society and initiatives in their respective fields are a shining example for all of us and an exceptional asset to our city’s prestige. Mr. Howlett was recognized under the social sector for his many contributions to the community.
Mr. Howlett is a second-generation member of the Academy in his family. His mother, Mrs. Alphonsine Howlett (1913-1992) was named in 1978, the first woman to receive the honour in the inaugural year of the Academy.
Peter A. Howlett, C.M., Heather Munroe-Blum, O.C., Ph.D., MSRC, Gérald Tremblay, Mayor of Montréal, Denise Robert and Rémi Marcoux, C.M., O.Q., F.C.A. (Photo: Maude Lajeunesse)
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
Guided snowshoe walks at night – make your group reservations now!
What can be more invigorating than a walk under the stars in the company of a guide from Les amis de la montagne to discover the mountain under a blanket of snow, while enjoying a winter sport in the heart of Montreal?
Les amis de la montagne are offering “brilliant” guided snowshoeing walks at night for groups of friends or work colleagues. The guided walk titled, “Snowshoeing by the light of the city” is a night time discovery of the mountain forest, while the activity titled, “A mountain of energy” is for those snowshoers seeking a quicker, more energetic pace. The evening snowshoe walks begin as of January 10, 2009, but reservations are being accepted now.
Custom outings are also available for groups of 10 to 60 participants.
THE TUQUES BLEUES CELEBRATION
Stars and superstars: the Tuques Bleues Celebration, 2009 edition
Les amis de la montagne are proud to welcome two “superstars” of the Montreal business community as honorary co-chairs of the 2009 edition of the Tuques Bleues Celebration and Snowshoe Event, Isabelle Hudon, President of Marketel and Rémi Racine, Chairman of the Board of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal and President and Executive Producer of Artificial Mind & Movement.
Photo: Marie-Claude Hamel
The Tuques Bleues Celebration and Snowshoe Event is Les amis de la montagne’s signature fundraiser, one of Montreal’s most original and dynamic wintertime events. Next February 19, strap on your snowshoes and join the hundreds of mountain fans for a magical evening that raises funds towards the conservation of Mount Royal.
Don’t forget that places are limited! No need to wait for your invitation in the mail. You may register for the Tuques Bleues Celebration – on your own or as a team – with just a few mouse-clicks by secure payment on the Internet. Details can be found on our website in the “News and events – Tuques Bleues Celebration
” section, or call us at (514) 843-8240, ext. 239.