The Société du Havre de Montréal unveils the conclusions of six studies of the proposed transformation of the Bonaventure Expressway into an urban boulevard at the gateway to downtown – conclusions that are extremely positive


Added on 12 April 2007 in Press releases

Press release

 The Société du Havre de Montréal unveils the conclusions of six studies of
the proposed transformation of the Bonaventure Expressway into
an urban boulevard at the gateway to downtown
– conclusions that are extremely positive

Montreal, April 12, 2007 – Today – in the presence of Gérald Tremblay, mayor of Montreal – Isabelle Hudon, chair of the board of the Société du Havre de Montréal, and Jacques Coté, its president and CEO, presented the conclusions of feasibility studies on the transformation of the Bonaventure Expressway into a major urban boulevard at the gateway to downtown.

“The opportunity and pre-feasibility studies carried out since 2003 provided us with the information needed to design the most growth-generating project possible to transform the Bonaventure Expressway at the gateway to downtown Montreal into a major urban boulevard.  Today, we take the next step in this process by unveiling the results of the feasibility studies that have enabled us, in less than eight months, to further our analyses of the points that required more in-depth study.  Combining rigour and ambition, we are thus proud to announce today that our conclusions are extremely positive,” declared Isabelle Hudon, chair of the board of the Société du Havre de Montréal and president and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal.

During the feasibility phase, six vital aspects of the project were studied: the development concept, construction costs, the real estate potential, economic spin-offs, public transit and traffic, and environmental issues.

“The feasibility phase further confirmed that the transformation of the Bonaventure Expressway offers an exceptional opportunity for Montreal, not only to create a prestigious gateway to the city but also to launch a project that truly meets the criterion of sustainable development.  By transforming the Bonaventure Expressway between Saint-Jacques and Brennan streets into a major urban boulevard, this project will re-establish a link – on a human scale – between the downtown core and the river.  In line with the development of the Cité Multimédia and the Quartier international, in a green environment integrating public transportation, this project will respect and absorb the unique qualities of the neighbouring residential areas,” continued Hudon.

“This project also differs from the vast majority of infrastructure rebuilding projects in that it is not motivated purely by traffic-related concerns but rather by the desire for integrated development focused on high quality urban planning, financial viability, and respect for the environment.  While the project is undeniably ambitious, it is first and foremost an unparalleled opportunity for the metropolis to stimulate its full and healthy development,” added Coté.

“The unified commitment of the various players associated with this project has allowed us to achieve a level of consensus that is among the strongest seen in Montreal in many years.  And now, in light of these rigorous and detailed feasibility analyses and their very positive conclusions – confirming not only the viability of this project but also its significant impact as a development lever – it is possible for decision-makers to make enlightened and responsible choices so as to move on to the next crucial step in this ambitious project: the pre-project phase,” added Hudon.

“Like that of the Quartier international, certain projects shape a city's future. They must be well prepared in order to ensure their success. This is the case with the Société du Havre project. An important step has been made. I am delighted that this project confirms the administration's choice in favour of public transportation. I am eager to see the studies be realized as a project that will see the development of this entire sector of Montreal flourish. I am certain that with the support and mobilisation of partners and governments, we will succeed,” concluded the mayor of Montreal.

To ensure the most exacting and rigorous management of this project, two additional phases must still be carried out before it is launched. First, the pre-project phase, in 2007-2008, will finalize the analyses of construction costs, the demolition of existing structures, the improvement of public lands, traffic management, and the optimization of public transit in the Bonaventure corridor.  Then, in 2009, the drawings and specifications phase – the last before the project is officially launched – will produce the final estimates of the costs of construction and the proposed actions.  Once these final two study phases are complete, the project will be launched in 2009 – to be finished three years later.

The Société du Havre de Montréal was founded in the wake of the Montreal Summit in 2002 with the financial support of the three levels of government.  Its mandate was to propose the outline of a joint intervention plan, along with an implementation and financing strategy, for the harbourfront and the surrounding area.  In spring 2004, it presented its Vision 2025 report – a proposal for the future of the harbourfront that has taken a further step forward today with the unveiling of a realistic plan.


Sylvie Paquette
Coordinator, Media relations
Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal
Tel.: (514) 871-4000, ext. 4015

The report, information summary and images are available at the following address: