Economic action plan aims to highlight Montreal's assortment of businesses

A total of $106.4 million has been set aside for the next four years, creating three "economic hubs" in Montreal in order to highlight the different types of businesses in the city.

$106.4M plan will create 3 economic hubs that feature different companies

Under the newly unveiled economic development plan, Ste-Catherine Street would be part of the centre economic hub, home to many businesses with international reach. (Navneet Pall/CBC)

The City of Montreal has unveiled the final part of its overall economic development action strategy.

"What we all want to do is break silos, to be more innovative and creative," Valérie Plante said at a news conference today.  

A total of $106.4 million has been set aside for the next four years, creating three hubs in Montreal in order to highlight the different types of businesses in the city.

Plante has appointed a committee, headed by the president of Montreal's Chamber of Commerce, Michel Leblanc. Its mandate will be to identify specific strategic projects that could give the city a boost economically. 

"As the mayor, I'm like an orchestra conductor, but I need to be inspired," said Plante. 

This portfolio is the last of eight action plans that make up the city's official economic development plan for the next five years.

Dividing the city to show it off

Part of the plan divides the city into economic hubs. The city says while a global vision is important, having hubs means concentrating specifically on the economic issues that affect specific type of businesses in the area.

The west hub covers the western part of the island, with 19,632 businesses and a concentration on the fabrication of products, such as machine development and transport materials.

The centre hub covers mostly downtown Montreal and surrounding neighbourhoods. There are 28,654 businesses there, many of which have an international reach. The jobs there are mostly professional services, finance, insurance and public administration.

The east hub covers the eastern section of the island, made up of 12,289 businesses principally related to fabrication, transport and storing.

Improving employees' commute times

The plan is divided into three axes: create a vision for development, support sustainable development and improve access to the economic hubs.

The city says it plans to work with different organizations to make sure that access to businesses is made easier for employees. 

One idea is to create pilot projects involving autonomous electric shuttles to help with the commute.