Six-storey residential project in Vaudreuil-Dorion will proceed
PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK
Vaudreuil-Dorion Mayor Guy Pilon listens as resident Dominique Asselin voices his concerns regarding a new six-storey residential project planned for Route de Lotbinière and Rue Émond during the Monday evening council meeting on November 4.
Construction of a six-storey residential building will go ahead despite opposition from nearby residents who signed a petition that was presented to Vaudreuil-Dorion council in mid-October asking the city to reconsider the scale of the project.
Mayor Guy Pilon’s response at the bi-monthly council meeting on November 4 was tailored specifically to resident Domenique Asselin. It was the third consecutive council session where Asselin raised the issue that the city should hold a public consultation meeting and referendum for area residents regarding the project.
Part of Harwood rejuvenation
Pilon rejected Asselin’s request saying a public consultation meeting had already been held to discuss the project but no one from the area showed up. It was part of a series of meetings that were held to gather public input into the city’s plans to rejuvenate Harwood Boulevard and Route de Lotbinière in 2015.
“We will not go back and do consultations. It’s too late. We did everything we had to do. Imagine what it would be like if each time someone comes and asks us to go back on a project that has already been approved two, three, or four years earlier and tells the mayor we would like to have a consultation at that point,” Mayor Pilon told The Journal during a telephone interview on November 4.
The mayor also rejected a request made by Asselin for council to hold a referendum for area residents so that they can voice their support or opposition to the project.
Scale of proposed project curtailed
The consultation process resulted in the city drafting a Plan Particulier de Urbanisme (PPU) that originally called for a four-storey building to be built on the corner of Route de Lotbiniére and Rue Émond. The promoter asked for a 10-storey building to be built but the city reduced the scale of the project down to six storeys, said Pilon.
“We worked for a-year-and-a-half on this project. Those people who are now against it didn’t come to the consultations for Boulevard Harwood. The only thing I have to agree with him (Asselin) is it was supposed to be four levels but at that time we were already working on the project with the same promoter and he asked for 10 levels. We said no,” said Pilon.
‘Petitions never impressed me’
The mayor also dismissed Asselin’s petition, saying, “Petitions never impressed me. Most people will sign because their neighbour signs and they don’t want to be in trouble with them. This person moved here about two to three years ago and he’s trying to change everything in the sector because he doesn’t like the fact that there will be a six-storey building.”
PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK
Vaudreuil-Dorion resident Dominique Asselin voices his concerns regarding the new six-storey residential project planned for Route de Lotbinière and Rue Émond.
Disappointed with response
The mayor’s response disappointed Asselin. “For some reason, I was expecting this answer. Obviously it’s sad but life goes on,” he said after the meeting. Asselin and his neighbours are concerned about the negative impact the high-density project could have on the single-family homeowners in the area.
Asselin is also upset that Mayor Pilon disregarded the petition that was submitted to council. “I would have liked that at least some consideration was given to the petition. What was said was that it was looked at without giving any thought to it. ‘We received it and that’s it.’ It’s obviously sad for the elected officials who are supposed to represent the people,” said Asselin. “We’re an entire neighbourhood expressing our concerns.”
Asselin reiterated he’s not opposed to the project. He just wants the city to revert its development plans back to the four-storey building that was proposed in its original PPU.