Montreal

Laval to turn old quarry into car-free urban centre

The Quebec government has earmarked $10 million for the development of a former quarry that has long been a gaping hole in the middle of Laval.

Legault government backs effort to decontaminate and develop 37-hectare site

Laval is promising a large park with a lake that is surrounded by research centres, stores and activities. (City of Laval)

The Quebec government has earmarked $10 million to turn a former quarry into a car-free site that would include tourist attractions, stores, offices and research centres.

The project, dubbed "Carré Laval" would be a carbon-neutral project that would include living spaces and schools, creating a downtown centre for Quebec's third-largest city, the municipality said.

Laval presented the project Monday, citing the financial support of the Quebec government over the next four years.

The money will be invested in decontaminating the land in the quarry and then redeveloping it, the city said.

The Lagacé quarry, located behind a courthouse and between Saint-Martin Boulevard West and du Souvenir Boulevard, is a patch of land measuring about 37 hectares — the size of more than 20 internationally sanctioned soccer fields.

Behind the Laval courthouse, between Saint-Martin Boulevard West and du Souvenir Boulevard, is a patch of land measuring about 37 hectares. Once known as the Lagacé quarry. (Google Earth)

Ideas for the site over the years have ranged from residential towers to an arena.

The city of Laval website said it wants to create a "diversified environment on a human scale where [residents] can live, work and have fun seven days a week, winter and summer alike."

Quebec Finance Minister Eric Girard said the project was an "important stage" in the development of Laval, a city he said is "expected to grow considerably over the next few years."

He also noted that the project will require investment from the private sector.

Laval has yet to outline the project's schedule but said multiple groups have expressed interest in its development.

With files from Radio-Canada

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