Greater Montreal Seeks a United Front to Transit Growth and Sustainability
Flavie Halas reports in Citiscope on the ongoing effort in the Montreal metropolitan area to bring the region's 82 municipalities together on shared interests, including better transit, environmental protection, and economic development. After facing crumbling infrastructure, a sluggish economy, and the migration of residents from the urban center to the city's periphery, the region’s mayors developed the Metropolitan Land Use and Development Plan (PMAD), allowing them to address the region's pressing problems together.
"Among the flagship projects included in PMAD is a 'green and blue belt' connecting green space, natural parks, rivers and protected buildings by a network of bike paths, public transit and waterways. That includes a new 143-kilometer (89-mile) bike and pedestrian path going from west to east."
However, the implementation of PMAD’s plans faces continuing challenges, including the sharing of data between municipalities and funding for the new transit infrastructure, which Halas notes has been chronically underfunded. PMAD's success may rely on the continuing cooperation of the region's 82 mayors, who despite occasional differences in opinion have relied on what one mayor describes as a mutual respect and recognition that there must be a balance between the needs of the urban center and the smaller suburban communities surrounding Montreal.