Change, please! Montrealers' priorities for Valérie Plante
Fewer construction zones, less traffic, more social housing top Montrealers' wishlists
Valérie Plante is Montreal's new mayor, and boy, does she have her work cut out for her.
Just a few days after beating Denis Coderre in a stunning upset, taking home 26,699 more votes, the first woman to be elected Montreal mayor has a long wish-list to fullfil — and it's been drafted by you, the voters.
We hit the streets of Montreal and asked: What would you like to see Valérie Plante change first?
Fix Montreal's traffic woes, add Pink line
Keith Hanna lives in Griffintown and works in the financial district. He says Denis Coderre's big projects "put Montreal on the map," but he often feels "stuck" on Montreal's roads. Hanna wants to see Valérie Plante's proposed Metro Pink line become a reality.
"She says she wants to do the Metro: it may be very hard to do, but I think that's the greatest gift you can give to the city."
"So we're going to have, supposedly, the Caisse de dépôt train, add to [that] fact the new Champlain Bridge and the highway and all that. All that put together, I think it would be amazing."
Repeal pit bull ban
Tamara Marsh walks dogs for clients in NDG. Marsh voted for Plante and thinks Coderre underestimated how many Montrealers wanted to see breed-specific legislation repealed.
"I have a Doberman, and they fall into the same category, because some people think they're scary sometimes, but mine's as scary as a kitten!"
"So if it were to come into effect for other [breeds], that would make a huge difference in my life. [I would] leave the city if I had to muzzle my dog and go through all this bureaucracy just to keep him."
Finish construction jobs
Jahna Szabo and her young family have lived in NDG for five years. She met Coderre at a Habs game once, and she liked his focus on renewing Montreal's infrastructure. But now, she says, Montreal has too many construction sites.
"Just today I realized this one route I've been taking is under construction, and another route I alternatively take is [also] under construction! So, I think it affects every Montrealer, and it's really getting annoying now."
"We're all at our wit's end with it."
Add more social housing
Guillaume Beaulieu is a cyclist who studies literature at UQAM. He lives in the east end of Plateau–Mont-Royal, and he's concerned about what he calls the "gentrification" of the area.
He voted for Plante and wants more social housing.
"There are so many families in Montreal who struggle with that kind of housing problem. They're forced to leave their neighbourhood to go much more at the extremes of Montreal. Even there, there's no more public transport to go work."
"It's a big issue."