Opinion: Safety should trump language for Quebec highway signs | Montreal Gazette

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The following is an excellent opinion piece by my friends Ruth and Harold. The petition to allow for bilingual sfaety signs on Quebec highways is on the National Assembly website, which has over 5,000 signatures. The petition can be seen and signed at www.assnat.qc.ca/en/exprimez-votre-opinion/petition/Petition-6407/index.html

Opinion: Safety should trump language for Quebec highway signs | Montreal Gazette

City updates emergency preparedness plan

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emergency preparedness plan 2017


The City of Côte Saint-Luc Emergency Preparedness Plan is one of the most important documents prepared by the elected officials and staff at City Hall. This plan sets out the framework for the protection of the people, environment and infrastructure before, during and after a disaster.

Emergency preparedness in the City is overseen by the Emergency Preparedness Committee, which I have chaired since first being elected in 1990. The committee is comprised of elected officials, staff and partners in emergency, health, social and technical services. This plan creates a process to avoid or reduce the damage and suffering caused by disasters and requires effective coordination between many internal and external resources.


All residents play an important role too to protect their family and home. Visit the Emergency Preparedness page at http://www.CoteSaintLuc.org to learn what you can do today to prepare for the first 72 hours of a disaster.

The City Council, staff and partners are hard at work behind the scenes, ensuring that the City is always ready and helping our residents feel safe and secure. This plan is updated on a regular basis to ensure that the City is always ready to handle any type of disaster – natural or man-made.

The City of Côte Saint-Luc Emergency Preparedness Plan addresses the preparation for, mitigation of, response to and recovery from disasters affecting the City
and its residents. The Emergency Preparedness Plan is mission-focused, as the source of the disaster is of secondary importance.

A prioritized list of threats, with the possible effects and impacts on people and on infrastructure is presented based on discussions by the City’s Emergency Preparedness Committee.

In preparing for and responding to a disaster, each group has important roles and responsibilities to fulfill. This includes elected officials, senior management, employees, volunteers and partners. A detailed training program is also presented, to allow responders different scenarios and opportunities to practice their skills, so that they are better prepared in a real emergency.

The Emergency Management Organization is divided into two important decision centres: the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) and the Emergency Site Management (ESM) teams. The EOC is responsible for strategic planning, dealing with regional and provincial partners, planning for business continuity, recovery and high-level decision making. The ESM team is responsible for providing service at the scene of the disaster.

The four missions of the City are:
(1) Social Services
(2) Public Works
(3) Communications
(4) Administration & Logistics

Each of the missions is divided into specific functions or tasks, with different departments or partners designated as being responsible, partner or support.
The goal of the document is to ensure that the City is prepared to respond to disasters, whenever, wherever and however they occur. The updated plan was officially adopted by way of a public resolution at the January public council meeting. I am proud to have moved the resolution.


Free Press | Jan. 31, 2017 | Click to enlarge

Free Press | Jan. 31, 2017 | Click to enlarge

Meadowbrook case expected in court late this year

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 The ongoing legal case involving Meadowbrook Golf Course developer Meadowbrook Groupe Pacific and the City of Côte St. Luc is expected to be back at Quebec Superior Court at the end of this year, says Côte St. Luc Councillor Dida Berku.

“We are now preparing our defence and we’re in the middle of doing examinations, and the case should be inscribed by the end of the year for hearing on the merits,” Berku told The Suburban.

A separate case between the developers and the City of Montreal over the latter’s refusal to allow building on the Lachine side is expected this spring, the councillor added.

Côte St. Luc was originally sued by Meadowbrook’s developer in 2000 when the city changed the zoning of its part of the golf course site from residential to recreational and commercial. Developers have been wanting to place housing on the site, half of which is in Lachine, for more than 25 years.

The original lawsuit lay dormant for years, until Groupe Pacific changed its lawsuit to claim $32 million — $19 million of which was to force the city to basically buy the part of the land in its territory — a land swap: and $13 million for loss of profits, reduced by Quebec Superior Court from $20 million.

As we reported in 2015, “the Quebec Superior Court found that the revised case was a “new recourse” not allowed by the Code of Procedure, and did not allow the company to pursue the $19 million claim. The court also found Groupe Pacific to be the cause of the original lawsuit being in limbo for some 12 years.

Late in 2015, Groupe Pacific wanted to amend its lawsuit once again, to claim another $20 million. The developer wanted the Quebec Court of Appeal to state its opinion on the merits of such a re-amendment to the Quebec Superior Court. But the Court of Appeal ruled that it cannot decide on this in advance and that the Superior Court would have to decide if Groupe Pacific can reamend its claim. This was also Côte St. Luc’s position, Berku said at the time.

Teen drivers need to be extra safe, It’s National Teen Driver Safety Week

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Resolution of the City of Cote Saint-Luc Council on the occasion of


WHEREAS, driving is an important and exciting right of passage for youth. It is also one of the riskiest activities for young people to engage in;

WHEREAS, teen driver safety is a significant issue in Canada. Young drivers are over represented in all road-related injuries and fatalities.

WHEREAS, National Teen Driver Safety Week is a week dedicated to raising awareness and seeking solutions to preventable teen deaths on the road across Canada. Everyone has a role to play in creating change amongst their peers, in classrooms and in their communities;

It was


“THAT the Côte Saint-Luc City Council hereby proclaims the week of October 16th – 22nd, 2016 as National Teen Driver Safety Week”.



ATTENDU QUE apprendre à conduire est un rite de passage important et excitant pour les jeunes, mais que c’est également une des activités les plus risquées pour les jeunes;

ATTENDU QUE la sécurité des conducteurs adolescents est un problème majeur au Canada et que les jeunes conducteurs sont surreprésentes parmi les victimes de blessures et les décès qui résultent d’accidents de la route;

ATTENDU QUE la Semaine nationale sur la sécurité des conducteurs adolescents est une semaine dédiée à sensibiliser le public et à trouver des solutions pour éviter les décès d’adolescents sur les routes de l’ensemble du Canada et que nous jouons tous un rôle dans la mise en ceuvre du changement parmi nos pairs, dans les salles de classe tout comme dans nos communautés ;
Il fut


«QUE la Conseil de la Ville de Côte Saint-Luc déclarons en conséquence, par la présente, la semaine du 16 au 22 octobre 2016 la Semaine nationale sur la sécurité des conducteurs adolescents».

Fleet to flow at 40 km/h



Cote Saint-Luc and Hampstead have agreed to harmonize the speed along Fleet in both towns to 40 km/h and to enhance the signage and street line marking at crosswalks. This cooperative project is aimed at ensuring greater safety of pedestrians.

Currently, the speed varies between 50 km/h in CSL to 50 km/h and 30 km/h in Hampstead.

Hampstead and CSL will install 40 km/h speed limit signs on Fleet between Cavendish and Dufferin Road on their respective territories. The cities will also collaborate to do their utmost to ensure that the traffic lights on Fleet Road, on their respective territories, are synchronized.

No_left_Fleet_Hampstead_2013a    No_left_Fleet_Hampstead_2013b

They will also work together to create a simplified plan as related to the wording on the signs for the no left turn policy on the streets running perpendicular to Fleet Road, namely, Netherwood, Finchley, Dufferin Road. This has been a serious source of frustration for motorists from both cities, many of whom have been ticketed for turning left off of Fleet, unable to decipher the confusing signage. The confusing road signs were also cited by a Montreal Court judge in dismissing a ticket to a Hampstead motorist (posted elsewhere on this blog).

Free Press, May 23. 2012

Free Press, May 23. 2012

Hampstead has also agreed to provide greater visibility for the unprotected cross walk between Queen Mary Road and Netherwood.

This synchronization plan is good news for West End motorists, cyclists and pedestrians alike. While Fleet is not wide enough for a dedicated bike lane the slower traffic will improve the safety of those on bikes and walking across the street. It is intended that crosswalks will be even more visible by better street line markings and signage will be installed in high visibility colours.

As the one who called for the initial meeting to discuss this project with Hampstead Mayor Steinberg I am very pleased with the cooperation between our two municipalities. Councillor Dida Berku and I along with CSL Urban Development Director Charles Senekal met with Mayor Steinberg and members of his administration last winter to discuss common concerns and ideas to reduce risk.

Two weeks ago I met again with Mayor Steinberg, CSL Mayor Mitchell Brownstein and members of council along with CDN-NDG Mayor Russell Copeman and Councillor Marvin Rotrand at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities in Winnipeg. We had a productive working meeting where we touched upon the Fleet –  Van Horne corridor among other subjects. Copeman and Rotrand are also open to the idea of synchronizing Van Horne between Hampstead and Decarie to 40 km/h as well.

Safer at 40 km/h speed sign

In addition I’ve asked Councillor Rotrand to have his staff repair the significant depressions in the roadway on Van Horne to ensure a steady flow of two lanes of traffic during rush hour and to have police enforce the no stopping regulation which often causes a bottleneck, blocking the flow of traffic and the 161 bus.

Thank you to the three municipal administraions and especially mayors Steinberg, Copeman and Brownstein for demonstrating a genuine interest in cooperation and collaboration.

Do you have ideas to improve this thoroughfare? Please share your ideas here.

Encouraging news from Birnbaum on Cavendish extension

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“An important step forward” is how David Birnbaum, MNA for D’Arcy-McGee, described a resolution adopted at last weekend’s Quebec Liberal Party’s General Council calling for the implementation of the long-awaited Cavendish extension. The final resolution, including an amendment brought forth by the D’Arcy-McGee Liberal Riding Association, was overwhelming adopted.


David Birnbaum


The original resolution, proposed by the Nelligan Riding Association proposed that: “The government recommend the opening of Cavendish Boulevard between Saint-Laurent and Côte Saint-Luc to provide a north-south alternative to motorists from the West’’.  Significantly, Nelligan is the riding of Municipal Affairs and Public Security Minister Martin Coiteux, who has a key role to play in orchestrating Quebec’s participation in the project.

The D’Arcy-McGee delegation to the weekend congress, led by President Orna Hilberger, strengthened the resolution by proposing the following amendment: “The government recommend and participate, with the other levels of government, in the financing and execution of the opening of Cavendish Boulevard between Saint-Laurent and Côte Saint-Luc to provide a north-south alternative to motorists from the West.’’

Cavendish is much more than a plan to reduce West-end traffic congestion, Birnbaum insisted. With the future developments of Namur-De-la-Savanne, including the Triangle, the Blue Bonnets site and potentially, the Quinze-40 shopping-centre project, Cavendish represents perhaps the central economic hub of activity for all of Montreal over the next 20 years. “I know that the residents of D’Arcy-McGee have been waiting a long time on this file. My colleagues in our government, and at every level of government, are working to make sure we see action, and soon.”

Birnbaum will host a summer fundraising cocktail on Monday, June 6 ( 6 pm to 8 pm) at Ecole Mosaique at 5621 McMurray Avenue in CSL.  Attendees are asked to make a $100 donation to the Quebec Liberal Party. For more information call Fran Gutman at 514-462-8671 or e-mail darcymcgeeqc@gmail.com. A prominent Minister from the government will speak.

Council declares May 30 as Parachute safe kids week

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Cote Saint-Luc City Council recently declared the week of May 30, 2016 as Parachute safe kids week.

Parachute is marking the 20th year of Safe Kids Week by focusing on the top injury issues that affect children at Home, at Play and on the Road. While there has been a decreasing trend in death and hospitalizations from preventable injuries, they remain the number one killer of Canadians aged 1 to 44.

Parachute Safe Kids Week is a national awareness week developed to bring attention to predictable and preventable injuries in Canada. Everyone has a role to play in creating change in their communities and keeping children active and safe from harm.

For more information visit the Safe Kids Canada website.

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