MONTREAL, April 21, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - Parc Jean-Drapeau is busily preparing for the upcoming summer season and its top-notch events and recreational activities. To deliver this program, the Société du parc Jean-Drapeau (SPJD) has to deal with logistical issues stemming from the major construction work starting soon to carry out the Development and Enhancement Plan (PAMV) of St. Helen's Island south sector. The project, whose objective is to create an international calibre event site, includes upgrading the main concourse linking the Alexandre Calder sculpture (L'Homme) to the Biosphere, and the natural amphitheatre that dates back to 1993.
While the Development and Enhancement Plan work is going on, the Société du parc Jean-Drapeau has set the following priorities for the summer of 2017:
- Ensure the safety of Parc Jean-Drapeau's users at all times;
- Stage major events that bring widespread exposure to the city of Montreal and Parc Jean-Drapeau;
- Ensure accessibility to Jean-Doré Beach;
- Maintain the cycling link/Route verte connecting the South Shore and Parc Jean-Drapeau/Montréal;
- Find solutions to the issues of vehicular, cyclist and pedestrian mobility.
Measures in force starting in May, 2017
To meets its objective of presenting major events such as the Grand Prix du Canada, Week-ends du monde, Piknic Électronik and the Osheaga Festival, the Société du parc Jean-Drapeau will be setting up three alternative event sites starting in the summer of 2017. One of the sites will be on St. Helen's Island, while the other two are on Île Notre-Dame (see map). This rearrangement, combined with the Development and Enhancement Plan work, has prompted the SPJD to implement the following measures relating to its activities:
1. Aquatic Complex : Closed in 2017 and open in 2018
Following discussions with the engineers and architects overseeing the execution of the Development and Enhancement Plan work, the SPJD agreed to close the Aquatic Complex for the following reasons:
- The facility being located alongside the construction site, the general contractor will need to change St-Helen's Island main water pipe that dates back to Expo 67. A retaining wall will also have to be installed along the edge of the pools to allow a safe replacing of the subway system's mechanical ventilation shafts.
- Several demolition, excavation and filling work will result in a releasing of dust that will affect the pools' water quality. Adding to the daily noise of heavy vehicles and the use of heavy equipment for excavation work, the construction of three buildings will require the installation of about 250 piles.
Under such circumstances, the SPJD will not be able to provide its users with a safe environment and ensure its clientele a high quality water. With the collaboration of the City of Montreal's sports department, all of the sports federations and clubs that train at the Aquatic Complex have been contacted to help them relocate for the 2017 season. As for swimmers and children of day camps, they will be redirected towards the Beach Jean-Doré.
2. Public transportation (STM) to Jean-Doré Beach and improved route
The Jean-Doré Beach will be open to public all summer from June 21 to Septembre 4, but using a different bus route (see map). With this new route, visitors that come by bus will now use the north entrance of the Beach and a drop-off area set up behind the Pavillon du Canada. This route will be shorter than previous years and therefore result in an increased frequency of service. Meanwhile, like last year, a family program, along with special promotions for children, will be offered at the Beach.
3. Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve bike path
The displacing of many events to Île Notre-Dame and the changing of the bus route to Jean-Doré Beach has forced the SPJD, for safety reasons and because many sections of the track are inaccessible, to reduce the number of days the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve bike path can be used in the 2017 season. The bike path will be open 17 weeks out of 31 during the season. Opened since April 7, the Circuit Gille-Villeneuve bike path will be closed from May 8 to Septembre 4, 2017. However, during this period, the SPJD will set up, on weekdays, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., a 2.5-kilometre long training circuit on the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve straight line, when the events' set-up and dismantling times will allow it. This circuit will be exclusively for training bikes, and the times it can be accessed will be posted on the Parc's website and on social media.
The decision to close the circuit during this period is due to the presence of many heavy vehicles traveling throughout the Île Notre-Dame area, the operations conducted by hundreds of workers and suppliers, the moving of various structures, and use of the track as an event site. Under the circumstances, a co-sharing of the track with cyclists would not be possible, because of safety concerns. An information campaign for users of Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve will be brought out by May 8, 2017.
4. The South Shore/Route verte bike route remains open
The cycling path linking St-Lambert and Parc Jean-Drapeau and the bike route leading to the Concorde Bridge are used every day by cyclists who like to travel to work on their bikes. This cycling trail has been open since April 7, but the route will be slightly changed as of May 8, 2017. This new route will force cyclists to use the Route Verte, which runs inside Île Notre-Dame's Floralies gardens (see map). This change is required because of the new bus route to Jean-Doré Beach and the event set-up and dismantling operations being conducted on the alternative event sites.
5. Pedestrian and vehicular mobility
The displacing of events to alternative sites, combined with the circulation of heavy vehicles stemming from the Development and Enhancement Plan work means that Parc Jean-Drapeau will be in a prevention mode over the coming months. As a result, a walkway will be erected above Chemin MacDonald to provide access to those traveling to the Parc by subway. This walkway will facilitate the mobility of crowds during major events.
Activities for everyone at Parc Jean-Drapeau this summer
The Development and Enhancement Plan work is not going to prevent Parc Jean-Drapeau from providing a top-notch recreational and event program all summer long. With huge sports and cultural gatherings, exhibitions at the Stewart Museum and the Biosphere, Environment Museum, recreational outings to La Ronde or the Casino, swimming and sun-tanning at Jean-Doré and rowing competitions at the Olympic Basin, Parc Jean-Drapeau will be a lively, fun-filled site during the summer of 2017, and the invitation goes out to one and all to come and discover – or rediscover – this great urban park.
And, to fully enjoy the wide range of activities Parc Jean-Drapeau is offering this summer, the population is invited to use public transportation, as this will definitely be the most convenient means of transportation because of the Development and Enhancement Plan work, but also because of the limited number of parking spaces.
To learn, in real time, about what's going on with the construction work or Parc Jean-Drapeau's events and activities, follow us on the website at www.parcjeandrapeau.com or on social media @parcjeandrapeau.
Contact: Geneviève Boyer, Communications Manager, 514 872-7322, [email protected]
SOURCE SOCIETE DU PARC JEAN-DRAPEAU