This morning we read in the Devoir and the Métro that the project of building a primary public school on the former Montreal Children’s Hospital site had been abandoned. Despite the news of Devimco announcing publicly that the school would not be included on site, we believe that the project is still possible and we will continue to act accordingly.
As mentioned in the articles, while it is true that negotiations between the developers, the Commission scolaire de Montréal (CSDM) and the Minister of Education were slow, Devimco also benefitted from numerous advantages for the development of the site as a whole. Most notably, the Coderre administration accepted Devimco’s redevelopment project for the Children’s only 6 days after the Office of public consultation (OCPM) report was released. This is much faster than usual – in the end, Devimco has in fact had time on their side for project development – we believe this fact could buy the community some time with Devimco before he locks the door for good on the project.
Furthermore, Devimco is not the only developer of the Montreal Children’s Hospital site. Philip Kerub was not mentioned by either media source, but he holds the reins on part of the site that Devimco has no control over. Even though Devimco may no longer be open to having a school on his side of the site, there may still be a chance to negotiate with Mr. Kerub. Lastly, the new development has been dubbed the “Children’s Square” – it would be rather ironic if the developers were set on abandoning the school on this 1.3 million square foot property.
With all of this in mind, it is more important than ever for us to send a united message – Our children’s education is more important than any economic or political goal . Please join us this Saturday March 3rd at 11am in Cabot Square (corner of Ste. Catherine and Atwater) to show all the key decision makers involved that we need them to work together towards a solution. There are currently 406 children in the Peter-McGill neighbourhood who must commute outside the district every day, and this number is only growing. We will be building an open air classroom from 11am – 1pm. Bring your friends and families – there will be activities for kids onsite including a juggling workshop, life size games, arts and crafts and banner making as well as free hot chocolate and snacks for all.
GET INVOLVED: We are also looking for volunteers, especially to help with set up and tear down. IF you are interested and available between 10-11am or 1-2pm please let us know.
Not able to attend? We are looking for testimonials! Are you a parent in the neighbourhood? Are you and your children affected by long commute times to school or overcrowding? If so, please get in touch with us to share your story. This will go a long way in getting the media, key decision makers and the general public to support our cause. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.