• John Jantak

Environmental study set to begin as part of Chaline Valley stabilization process


St. Lazare Pro-Mayor Pamela Tremblay announced at the April 10 council meeting that a contract was mandated to Stantec Experts-Conseil which will carry out an environmental study over the next few weeks as part of the preparatory work for the eventual stabilization of the slopes along the Quinchien River in Chaline Valley.

The Town of St. Lazare took another step forward towards resolving the Chaline Valley landslide issue after council unanimously adopted a resolution at the Tuesday evening session on April 10 to conduct an environmental study along shoreline and slopes of properties along the Quinchien River.

Pro-Mayor and District 2 Councillor Pamela Tremblay, who replaced Mayor Robert Grimaudo during an absence, voted for the resolution, as did Councillors Geneviève Lachance, Martin Couture, Michel Poitras and Brian Trainor. District 5 Councillor Richard Chartrand was also absent.

Concern about the study was raised by resident Richard Meades during question period who asked for clarification regarding what the resolution actually meant and whether a second resolution to exempt the town from certain aspects could have negative consequences.

Compliance requirement

Tremblay said the environmental study is part of compliance requirements requested by the provincial environment ministry before the stabilization work can begin. The contract was mandated by council to Stantec Experts-Conseil which will carry out the study over the next few weeks.

“We’re going forward and giving them a contract to conduct an at-large study that will encompass every imaginable environmental aspect we can think of,” said Tremblay.

The study is also necessary before the town can begin any work to stabilize the slope along the banks of the Quinchien River and one of its tributaries as it intends to do later this year. Engineers and specialists in specific fields will compile data, compile and take plant and wildlife inventories, photos, and surveys.

Residents can expect regular contact with the engineers and specialists who will be involved in gathering information in the sectors targeted by the study. They will carry appropriate identification and will be duly authorized by the town. Work will be carried out from Monday to Friday between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m.

The town encourages anyone who has doubts about someone’s presence to contact the phone line dedicated to the Chaline Valley project at (514) 250-0964.

Stabilization prep work

The study is also the first in a series of preparatory activities that will take place over the next few months that will include drawing up plans and specifications related to the stabilization work. Drones equipped with cameras resumed flights in Chaline Valley last week. The videos and photos collected will also help to precisely pinpoint the work that will have to be done.

Council members approved a second resolution to appoint Director General Serge Tremblay to take the necessary steps required by asking the provincial government to exempt the town from certain procedures to accelerate delivery time frames.

Tremblay reassured Meades that the possible exemptions don’t mean the town intends to forego important procedures in order to speed up the stabilization process. “This resolution is saying to the government that you may not need all these tests and anything you don’t need please let us know so we can take them out,” said Tremblay.

The actual stabilization work is still expected to begin in December 2018.

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