Plateau water main break encases neighbourhood in ice
Some streets may remain closed all weekend as crews work to repair broken pipe and clean up mess
Some Plateau-Mont-Royal borough residents woke up to an icy surprise Saturday morning.
An early-morning water main break near the intersection of St-Joseph and Berri streets met with freezing temperatures to produce a neighbourhood skating rink nobody wanted.
"It was a nice surprise," said Juan Cardenas, laughing as he struggled to chip his car out of the ice. "The joys of living here in Montreal."
"Everybody's helping. It's great. It shows that Montreal still has some good neighbourhoods," said Richard Laplante, who was outside helping his neighbours free their cars on St-André Street.
City councillor Alex Norris said a special snow and ice-loading session has been planned for this evening.
He said sidewalk-clearing machines were also deployed to help people get their cars unstuck.
"This is a frustrating experience for us, because we've been waiting for some time for this very old water main to be repaired," Norris said. The central city administration is responsible for this work but has been delaying it, he added.
The water filtered down to Mont-Royal Avenue and even Marie-Anne Street, leading Montreal police to shut down both St-Joseph and Mont-Royal Avenue between Berri and Boyer streets.
Mont-Royal Avenue eventually reopened early on Saturday afternoon.
Some streets could remain closed for the entire weekend while the city cleans up and works to repair the burst pipe.