• John Jantak

New fish habitat planned for Vaudreuil Rapids


PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK

Mayor Guy Pilon said a new fish habitat will be created along the Vaudreuil Rapids at Parc Sabourin by the primary contractor who will build the new Champlain Bridge as compensation for the loss of fish habitat along the St. Lawrence River.

The inevitable destruction of fish habitats along the portion of the St. Lawrence River where the new Champlain Bridge will be built could be an environmental boon for Vaudreuil-Dorion after Mayor Guy Pilon announced details at the Monday council meeting on November 21 of a compensation plan that will establish a new fish habitat along the Vaudreuil Rapids.

The habitat will be created at Parc Sabourin, on the south side of Harwood Boulevard just before the Highway 20 overpass across the Ottawa River that spans Vaudreuil-Dorion and Pincourt, Pilon told Your Local Journal.

Pilon said the primary construction company that will build the bridge has been scouting for locations within the Montreal region and determined that the Vaudreuil Rapids would be the best place for the fish habitat.

“They will create a place where the fish will be able to reproduce and eventually it will become a great spot for fishermen. More rapids and places where fish will be able to reproduce will be created. It’s already a very popular place where people come to fish in the spring before the water starts to go down in the summer,” said Pilon.

“It’ll take about one or two years but eventually there will be more fish and it will become even better for the fishermen.” Pilon added, saying the project to reconfigure the rapids will only take a few months.

“It’ll be a small job to do the rapids,” said Pilon. “They will dump some rocks to create pathways and after that it will be nature that does the rest. It’s not a big thing. You won’t see 20 shovels or anything like that. In fact, it will be very discrete. We’re very happy with the plan and looking forward to seeing the results.”

In addition to the fish habitat, Pilon said the contractor will also upgrade Parc Sabourin as part of the compensation package which will make it an ideal destination for both locals and visitors. “The contractor will put in a lot of money in the project which will make the park look a lot better than it does now,” said Pilon.

Hazmat gear acquisition

Council also announced the acquisition of specialized firefighting hazardous material gear from the Salaberry-de-Valleyfield fire department valued at $25,000 for $6,000. Pilon said the purchase will provide its fire department with additional equipment for a minimal cost which will be useful when responding to emergency situations dealing with chemical spills and fires.

“The equipment is slightly used which isn’t a problem with us,” said Pilon. “It’s our fire department that deals with hazmat emergencies for the entire Municipalité Régionale de Comté (MRC) de Vaudreuil-Soulanges. We are one of three MRC municipalities that deal with specific emergency situations.

“Pincourt takes care of enclosed spaces underground, Rigaud deals with situations involving height, and we deal with dangerous chemicals. For example, if a truck dumps chemicals on the highway or if there is a building fire with chemicals, we have the equipment and personnel who are able to properly deal with the situation. This is our responsibility.”

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