Who we are


MISSION


The mission of the Peter-McGill Community Council is to bring together and promote collaboration between the district’s residents, shopkeepers, workers and  students, and the public and community organizations that serve them. The Table aims to encourage a sense of belonging to the neighbourhood and an active involvement in the life of the community by creating a place where stakeholders can express their concerns, collectively determine priorities for action and be  empowered to improve the quality of life in the neighbourhood.

OBJECTIVES


  • To create a space (literal or figurative) where the population (residents, merchants, workers, students in the district) may express concerns, make known their points of view and engage in collective actions to improve the quality of life in the neighbourhood;
  • To develop ways of informing and communicating with the district’s residents, merchants, workers and students, and the public and community organizations that serve them;
  • To bring together residents, merchants, workers and students with the public and community organizations that serve them to collectively identify community needs, prioritize  actions and carry them out.

OUR HISTORY


Before 2002 there were a few sectoral round tables in the western part of downtown. They included the Regroupement des services aux aînés-centre-ville, Forum jeunesse, the Table des centres de la petite enfance, the Comité de direction jeunesse, a table for groups working with women in the CLSC Métro area and an itinerant round table. These were discussion or information forums consisting solely of community organizations and public institutions. With the exception of the itinerant round table, their area of concern was the CLSC Métro area (which included the Westmount borough, western downtown and the McGill ghetto) and not a geographically determined area.

These round tables focussed on certain subjects, and it was apparent that they were limited in their ability to act more globally on topics concerning the quality of life downtown. The idea of developing a neighbourhood round table grew in the minds of several people for some time. Forum jeunesse entertained the notion with a view to carrying out certain large-scale projects that exceeded its mandate and for which it did not have the resources to get off the ground.

The Montreal Summit, which was held in May and June 2002, was an occasion to bring together the community organizations in the Peter McGill district, with all sectors of intervention taken into account, to inform them of how the consultative event would unfold and to collectively define the district’s priorities and needs. Once these needs were identified, and due to the fact that very few of the organizations in the district were invited to speak during the summit, the organizations present were prompted to band together in order to put forward their point of view, coordinate their efforts and take action regarding the needs that had been identified.

A working committee was then formed to start up a neighbourhood round table. The Peter McGill Community Council round table was incorporated in December 2002 and held its founding meeting in June 2003.

Since then, the Table has conducted various activities and allowed community actors to speak with one voice on matters related to urban planning, social housing, social inclusion, urban safety, abatement of traffic, green spaces, cleanliness and the place of families.

Recent Posts

Primary school in the neighbourhood: news

We were pleased to learn on June 1st, that two public primary schools would be built in the Peter-McGill district over the course of the coming years. The first will be located in the Académie Bourget building, located on De La Montagne Street. The second will be on the Grey Nuns site, which belongs to Concordia Universiry and is located at the corner of St. Mathieu and René-Lévesque. These schools will help families and new comers to stay downtown in the long-term, in a sector which has been struggling to retain families. Two schools also means there will be less distance for local children to travel in the morning and evening, who currently attend schools in other neighbourhoods. This is a big day for residents and groups in Peter-McGill, who have been advocating for a primary school downtown for many years.

We also learned that 24 classes on the Grey Nuns site will be built, bringing the neighbourhood very close to the total of 37 classes needed to accommodate local children by 2021. However, the Grey Nuns site also has a vast green space, which is another longstanding need for the downtown community. Unfortunately building a school on this site means removing a large section of green space that could have been opened up to the public. Over the course of the year through various surveys and meetings, the community has expressed their preference for a school on the Grand Séminaire site, which could have included a larger number of classrooms without compromising any significant green space in the neighbourhood. Many residents have also expressed their concern regarding the fact that they haven’t been consulted about the school project on the Grey Nun’s site ahead of the announcement.

Survey

In the context of the announcement of the schools on the Grey-Nuns site, we sent out a quick survey asking our members their opinions. Here is a summary of the 188 responses:

The 15.5% remaining are mostly staff from Concordia university.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are the main comments attached to the survey :

IN FAVOR (51 comments)

Central, safe space, next to the metro, green space for the kids, educationnal purpose of the site, daycare on site, better a school than nothing at all

NOT IN FAVOR (131 comments)

Loss of a green space (mature trees), potential loss of a green space open to public, surrounding trafic (noise, polution, etc.), historical and patrimonial value of the site, many respondants suggest the Grand Séminaire instead, not the safest space (bars, shops, students, etc.)

The Community Council and its partner’s position

On Tuesday 19th, this topic has been deeply discussed among community groups, citizen’s associations representatives and the Community Council. Our common position is to express our concerns to the ministry of education with a letter signed by all the partners, while keeping pushing forward the Sulpcian’s site option, which is also the CSDM’s first choice. We will keep you posted and in the meantime, feel free to contact us and share your thoughts.

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