Pincourt resident complains about 10-year wait for new subsidized seniors’ housing co-op
PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK
Despite a 10-year delay, Pincourt Mayor Yvan Cardinal and town council expressed optimism that a subsidized seniors’ co-op will be built at Pointe-aux-Renards.
An ongoing 10-year wait for construction to begin on a much-anticipated subsidized seniors’ co-op in Pincourt prompted a resident to vent his frustrations about the long time delay during the Tuesday evening council meeting, April 12.
Robert Trépanier pleaded with Mayor Yvan Cardinal and the six town councillors to try to find a way to get the provincial government to resolve the delays so that work can begin to build the long-anticipated project slated for Pointe aux Renards, south of Boulevard Cardinal-Léger near Chemin Duhamel.
For Trépanier, who has been closely involved with the project since its inception in 2006 and continually raises the issue at council meetings, the seniors’ co-op is long overdue with 200 Pincourt residents registered on a waiting list.
With the elderly population steadily increasing in the Vaudreuil-Soulanges region, three new major privately-owned, assisted-living seniors’ residences are currently in various phases of construction in neighbouring cities – two in Vaudreuil-Dorion and one in L’Île Perrot, but they don’t meet the needs of people who can’t afford them, said Trépanier.
The lack of affordability is the reason why it’s so important for the town to keep pushing the government to get the matter resolved as quickly as possible, said Trépanier. “I don’t know when it’s going to be done,” he told Your Local Journal after the meeting. “I think the town should push harder. Is it going to be another 10-year wait and then another 10 years?”
Cardinal balked when Trépanier suggested that perhaps a significant number of people on the waiting list may have already died waiting for the new residence. Cardinal mildly chided that the comment might be a slight exaggeration and expressed optimism that the project will be built despite Trépanier’s outlook.
“Unfortunately, Mr. Trépanier’s question is what is the town going to do about this project?” said Town Manager Michel Perrier. “Our reply is that the town has done everything it could. We gave away a piece of land so it could be developed. What’s delaying the project right now is that we’re waiting for the authorization from the Ministry of Environment to proceed with it.
“We’re also waiting for the Société d’habitation du Québec to finance the project. It’s $8 million. The town doesn’t have that kind of money to provide and it’s not our mandate, it’s the ministry’s. So the delays are in the Quebec government offices and not with the Town of Pincourt. And I can understand the frustration,” Perrier added.
The town’s predicament is compounded because a 160-unit seniors’ co-op was built in Vaudreuil-Dorion about seven years ago. Perrier said it was easier for the city to get approval for the project because it wasn’t built on a wetland or other sensitive ecosystem.
“We have problems they didn’t have in Vaudreuil-Dorion,” said Perrier. “This is what takes time. It’s government authorization that we’re missing. We’re pushing and pushing and pushing but there’s no result so far.
“Mr. Trepanier’s frustration is because he’s worked on the project but it’s not simple. There are a lot of things that have to be done to receive authorization from different government bodies. This is why he’s frustrated. But for us as a council, we’re still optimistic for the end-result,” Perrier added.