Backgrounder: Four projects to enhance climate change resiliency in the Greater Montreal area
Investment of nearly $2.8 million
The Government of Canada and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) announced an investment of $2,777,960 in four green infrastructure projects in the Greater Montreal Area. These projects will help municipalities to better prepare for and adapt to the new reality of climate change as well as reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The funding comes from the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP), delivered by FCM and funded by the Government of Canada.
|Montreal||A blue-green alley for Bâtiment 7 in the Sud-Ouest borough||$527,960|
|Laval||Integrated collaborative strategy to mitigate the effects of urban heat islands through demineralization and tree planting||$750,000|
|Beloeil||Infrastructure redesign project and greening to fight heat islands and runoff in the Duvernay Street area||$750,000|
|Boucherville||Construction of an eco-friendly park and ride||$750,000|
Centre d’écologie urbaine de Montréal and the City of Montreal, Quebec
A blue-green alley for Bâtiment 7 in the Sud-Ouest borough
MCIP funding: $527,960
The Centre d’écologie urbaine de Montréal (CEUM), in partnership with the City of Montreal and the Sud-Ouest borough, will implement a capital project, “A blue-green alley for Bâtiment 7 in the Sud-Ouest borough.” The project consists of planting vegetation, as well as disconnecting roof drains and redirecting water into alleyways in order to relieve pressure on municipal infrastructure. In the dense urban area of Montreal, flat roofs are responsible for much of the rainwater channelled into the municipal sewer system, increasing the pressure on infrastructure. Montreal’s underground drainage system was not designed to handle this much water, which results in overflowing, sewer back-up and flooding.
Because of climate change, extreme rain is becoming increasingly frequent, bringing more pressure to bear on the city’s system and resulting in more frequent flooding. The blue-green alley project will help the city adapt to climate change by relieving pressure on municipal infrastructure and will enable citizens to participate in the process in their own neighbourhoods.
The objectives of the project are to:
- Reduce the impact of urban heat islands by demineralizing surfaces
- Enhance flood resilience
- Reduce sewer back-up into homes
- Reduce peak flow in the system
- Reduce the amount of water discharged into the system, thereby reducing facility operating and maintenance costs and increasing the lifespan of facilities
- Reduce overflow into waterways
- Mitigate shoreline erosion
- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions through greening
City of Laval, Quebec
Integrated collaborative strategy to mitigate the effects of urban heat islands through demineralization and tree planting on Laval territory
MCIP funding: $750,000
The City of Laval will implement a capital project to mitigate the impact of urban heat islands. These heat islands represent 13% (3,223 ha) of its territory.
The project consists in the demineralization of a surface area of 3,000 m², and the planting of 7,200 plants, including 1,500 trees, on both public and private land. The latter will be accomplished by a well-known organization in the field, in collaboration with homeowners.
The project will have numerous environmental, social and economic impacts. The Université du Québec à Montréal, the public health directorate of Laval and OURANOS will lend their expertise to targeting priority sites in order to effectively protect vulnerable populations, and the installation of air temperature sensors will help evaluate the effect of the interventions on the surrounding temperature.
The project will make it possible to quantify the environmental benefits associated with demineralization and greening in terms of adaptability to climate change.
City of Beloeil, Quebec
Infrastructure redesign project and greening to fight heat islands and runoff in the Duvernay Street area
MCIP funding: $750,000
This project involves the integration of green infrastructures in a major refurbishment of Duvernay Street in Beloeil and has three objectives:
- Foster the natural infiltration of rainwater into the soil
- Lower the surrounding temperature
- Revitalize the commercial strip
Two design plans have been developed to illustrate green infrastructure that could achieve these objectives. This project will implement them. The green infrastructure will address 16% to 26.9% of the permeable surfaces in the project area. A total of 200 large-growing trees will be planted, increasing potential canopy coverage from 5.2% to 25.9%. These interventions will be complemented by the integration of urban furniture and the installation of two charging stations for electric vehicles and bike stands, fostering green travel and a reduction in CO2 emissions. The project will create a public space and consumption areas outside businesses, revitalizing the commercial strip and enhancing consumer retention.
The entire project, from the design phase to its implementation, will also foster the mobilization of merchants around a commercial identity (mostly local businesses trying to stand out from major outlets located in the shopping centre adjacent to Duvernay Street). Business owners on Duvernay Street are already keenly interested in participating in the revitalization project proposed by the City of Beloeil.
The project will also have a major impact on public awareness thanks to its educational component. Information signs will be posted explaining the purpose of each change in helping the community adapt to climate change. The City of Beloeil would like this to be a model for other communities.
City of Boucherville, Quebec
Construction of an eco-friendly park and ride
MCIP funding: $750,000
The City of Boucherville is building an environmentally friendly 230-space park-and-ride facility at the intersection of de Montarville Boulevard and Highway 132 East. It will complement the existing 360-space park-and-ride facility at the intersection of de Montarville Boulevard and Highway 132 West, which is now used to capacity. The new parking lot will also foster a modal shift (single occupancy car-bus) during work on the Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine tunnel, slated to begin in two years.
Several different techniques will be used, including:
- The installation of bio-retention cells in order to plant large-growing trees to counter urban heat islands
- The large-scale use of draining pavement to counter urban heat islands and manage rainwater
- The installation of green gabion walls around the parking lot
- The installation of a vortex separator to remove suspended solids (SS), grease and oil from runoff
- The planting of approximately 115 new large-growing trees
- The installation of charging stations for electric vehicles
- The use of directional LEDs limiting light pollution
This environmentally friendly park-and-ride project is in line with the strategies developed by the City of Boucherville in its community sustainable development plan (Agenda 21) adopted in September 2013.
In conclusion, this innovative and user-friendly project will have an extremely positive impact on the quality of life of citizens and public transit users, while minimizing environmental impact.
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