Montreal is the most populated municipality in Quebec and Canada’s second largest city. Complete Streets are referred to as “Rues Conviviales” in Québec.
Montreal’s 2008 Réinventer Montréal Plan de transport refers to building streets “plus conviviales,” or more friendly, which is the French term for Complete Streets. “Dans le contexte d’un accroissement anticipé du nombre de cyclistes et de piétons, il est essentiel de travailler à rendre les rues plus accueillantes et plus conviviales, où chaque utilisateur pourra effectuer ses déplacements de façon sécuritaire”
The City of Montreal’s 2013 “Quartiers Verts: Guide d’aménagement durable des rues de Montréal” includes numerous references to “Rues Conviviales” (Complete Streets). The guide is intended as a resource for neighbourhoods to use in transitioning to a sustainable public realm and to serve as a means of standardizing Complete Streets designs in Montreal (p. VI).
The guide promotes Complete Streets as a means of ensuring streets are designed with all users and modes in mind, with a particular emphasis on accommodating seniors, children and disabled people, and that street design promotes cycling, walking and transit use. The guide includes a wide variety of Complete Streets examples, neighbourhood maps, and design strategies for traffic calming, street greening, and prioritizing walking, cycling and transit.
The case study conducted on Notre-Dame Street West was one of the nine studies included in Montreal Urban Ecology Centre’s report analyzing complete street transformations across the province of Quebec.
- Street category: Commercial street
- Project length: 450 m
- Total cost: $10.5 M
- Cost per km: $23.1 M
- Year of implementation: 2018
Taking advantage of the renewal of the underground infrastructure, the City of Montréal completely redeveloped the surface of Notre-Dame Street West, between Atwater Avenue and Saint-Augustin Street. In the context of the redevelopment, the Parc du Bonheur-d’Occasion, located at the corner of Rose-de-Lima Street, was renamed “Place du Bonheur-d’Occasion” to reflect its new contemporary stone design. In tribute to the writer Gabrielle Roy, benches were installed with quotations from her novel Bonheur d’occasion. In September 2017, the Place du Bonheur-d’Occasion was inaugurated with a big celebration including music, animation and various activities.
The widening of the sidewalks and the installation of curb extensions at most intersections resulted in the removal of parking spaces and reduced the roadway to 3.4 metres, the minimum width required for buses. In addition, the raised intersections and the surfaces covered with paving stone form a new area that offers meeting places and space for events with temporary pedestrianization of the street.
In addition to raised intersections brought level with the sidewalks, tactile warning plates indicate the location of pedestrian crossings for people with impaired vision. The alignment of the urban furniture also forms a protected pedestrian corridor.
The new street does not include a bicycle lane. However, bicycle stands were added and the development project includes plans to add BIXI stations and bicycle repair stations, all to promote active travel.
Bus lines 35, 36, 71 and 191 serve Notre-Dame Street West. Bus shelters were installed on some sections. The new configuration includes benches close to bus stops.
The raised and narrowed intersections facilitate pedestrian crossing and result in reduced vehicle speeds. In addition, the intersection with Rose-de-Lima Street was reconfigured to enhance pedestrian safety.
Landscaping and furniture
Vegetative strips add to the greened surfaces of the new Notre-Dame Street West and the addition of many trees provides a safe buffer zone between the sidewalk and the roadway. The tree wells are large and interconnected by means of new technology (Silva Cell) that allows the spread of roots under the sidewalk. The urban furniture creates spaces for relaxation and modern lamp posts complement the landscaping.
In 2015, citizens and merchants expressed their opinions through consultative activities carried out in the street, in commercial establishments, as well as through an online survey. Two participatory workshops organized on their behalf provided an opportunity to exchange ideas and to validate the proposed scenarios.
Thanks to a construction mitigation plan and to community activities, the borough was able to maintain good communication with stakeholders. Moreover, the Société de développement commercial – Les Quartiers du Canal benefited from the PR@M-Artère en chantier program, a measure aimed at assisting the business community during major underground infrastructure work involving the reconstruction of water or sewage networks.
Key Element: Recognition award
The Le Sud-Ouest borough won the Plume d’argent at the Gala des Plumes d’excellence 2017 of the Association des communicateurs municipaux du Québec for “Ponto,” a friendly orange cone featured in the playful communication campaign titled “La Dame se refait une beauté.”
Cross section: Corner of Greene Avenue
Total pavement: +/-15 metres
The case study conducted on Buchan Street was one of the nine studies included in Montreal Urban Ecology Centre’s report analyzing complete street transformations across the province of Quebec.
- Street category: Local street
- Project length: 280 m
- Total cost: $2.5 M
- Cost per km: $8.9 M
- Year of implementation: Autumn 2017
The redevelopment of Buchan Street is part of the Côte-des-Neiges-Notre-Dame-de-Grace borough’s “The triangle” project. The redevelopment, based on the Shared Street approach, aims to reduce the segregation of different modes of transportation, so as to calm automobile traffic and promote the coexistence of users. Buchan Street crosses the triangle formed by Mountain Sights Avenue, Paré Street and Victoria Avenue. This area, formerly dominated by the automobile industry, has been the locus of a major real estate development that takes advantage of proximity to the Namur and De la Savane metro stations.
On one side of Buchan Street, the sidewalk was raised 5 cm above the pavement, and on the other, it was brought level with a slight slope. The sidewalks were widened to 3 m after the roadway was narrowed. Plans include the installation of a pedestrian square at the corner of Mountain Sights Avenue and the addition of a park between Buchan Street and Victoria Avenue.
Tactile surfaces, guiding lines and contrasting visual elements are located on all the streets in “The triangle” project to assist persons with impaired vision. The sidewalk, only slightly higher than the pavement, facilitates the movement of persons with reduced mobility.
In accordance with the shared street model, there are no marked bicycle lanes on the street. This approach, which removes the demarcations separating road users, promotes a new dynamic and changes the rhythm at which users negotiate use of the street.
Buchan Street was changed from a unidirectional to a bidirectional street. The roadway was narrowed and the speed limit was reduced to 20 km/h. Texture was added to the pavement through the use of paving stones. Curb extensions were added at each street corner, as well as halfway between intersections. These help reduce the speed of automobiles and facilitate pedestrian travel.
Landscaping and furniture
Managing runoff water in an ecological manner is one of the main objectives of “The triangle” project. Retention swales were integrated into the Buchan Street design. Trees were planted (in a Silva Cell type network). Vegetation and urban furniture, such as benches and intelligent streetlights that can modulate light intensity, were also added.
Issue: Sharing the street
Shared streets were recently authorized by the Ministère des Transports, de la Mobilité durable et de l’Électrification des transports du Québec, but the signage has not yet been determined. A municipality that wants to convert a public road into a shared street must, among other things, pass a regulation and follow the Ministère’s directions.
Cross section: Corner of Mountain Sights Avenue
Total pavement: +/-15 metres
The case study conducted on Saint-Jean-Baptiste Boulevard was one of the nine studies included in Montreal Urban Ecology Centre’s report analyzing complete street transformations across the province of Quebec.
- Street category: Commercial street
- Year of implementation: 2015
The Rivière-des-Prairies–Pointe-aux-Trembles borough worked in collaboration with the City of Montréal to redevelop Saint-Jean- Baptiste Boulevard, between Forsyth Street and Notre-Dame Street East, which constitutes the only link between the borough’s two historic sectors. The project comprised four orientations: safe travel, revitalization of the economic sector, greening and beautification, and enhancement of active transportation. In 2014, the segment between Notre-Dame Street East and Bellerive Street was transformed in order to create the Place du Village-de-la-Pointe-aux-Trembles, a multifunctional heritage area with a view of the river.
The roadway was narrowed so the sidewalks could be widened and trees were planted to create a buffer zone between pedestrians and the roadway.
In the Place du Village-de-la-Pointe-aux-Trembles, the sidewalks were brought level with the pavement to facilitate foot travel and promote universal accessibility.
Bicycle lanes were installed in each direction. They are connected to the existing bicycle network. Cyclists must travel on foot in the Place du Village-de-la-Pointe-aux-Trembles.
Three bus lines service the boulevard between Sherbrooke Street East and Notre-Dame Street East. The Société de transport de Montréal added the new number 81 bus route which travels the length of Saint-Jean-Baptiste Boulevard, connecting Rivière-des-Prairies and Pointe-aux-Trembles. This new route provides residents of Pointe-aux-Trembles with more rapid access to the Rivière-des-Prairies railway station and facilitates access to the city centre.
A reduction in the number of traffic lanes helps decrease the speed of motorists. In the Place du Village-de-la-Pointe-aux-Trembles, parking is only available on one side of the street and chicanes were added to reduce traffic speeds.
Landscaping and furniture:
The planting of trees to eliminate heat islands, the installation of new streetlights and the renovation of building facades along the street all contributed to the beautification of Saint-Jean-Baptiste Boulevard. The installation of works of art and exhibition panels, the addition of sunloungers and swing seats, the public market and the organization of cultural activities have made the new Place du Village-de-la-Pointe-aux-Trembles a convivial space for meeting and relaxing.
A public consultation activity was carried out by the Rivière-des-Prairies-Pointe-aux-Trembles borough regarding the Place du Village-de-la-Pointe-aux-Trembles redevelopment project. Information events for citizens concerning the boulevard’s redevelopment were conducted by the City of Montréal’s central departments.
Issue: phasing of the project
The segment of Saint-Jean-Baptiste Boulevard between Notre-Dame Street East and Prince-Albert Street remains to be completed by the City of Montréal to finish redevelopment of the stretch between Forsyth Street and Notre-Dame Street East. In addition, a link for the bicycle lane between Victoria Street and Notre-Dame Street East remains to be established, to connect to the Place du Village-de-la-Pointe-aux Trembles.
Cross section: Corner of René-Lévesque Street
Total pavement: +/-20 metres