The Rockland sector is on the cusp of reinventing itself. A Special Planning Program (PPU) for the Rockland sector looks into how this area should be developed in the coming decades.

Until January 15, 2021, the document is the subject of a public consultation.

  • Read Draft By-law No. 1440-1, which was divided in two parts to accomodate its weight: part 1, part 2.
  • A Powerpoint presentation for this draft by-law can also be viewed online.
  • Consult the traffic study associated to the PPU (French only).

Consultation in writing: by January 15, 2021, at the latest

To be eligible, a comment must be:

or

  • be dropped off in the Town Hall’s mailbox, at 90 Roosevelt Avenue, Mont-Royal for the attention of the Town Clerk.

Q&A and Miscellaneous information

Why opt for a PPU?  

A PPU is a component of an urban plan that provides detailed information on a specific sector with a vision for its future development.

The Rockland PPU is a long-term vision for the sector that spans 15 to 20 years.

Since it is highly likely that the land occupied by the shopping centre will undergo major changes and that the Rockland Centre will be transformed, the Town wants to be proactive and take the lead by establishing guidelines, a vision and specific objectives that will help guide redevelopment.

What are the broad guidelines of the Rockland PPU?

The Rockland PPU proposes six broad guidelines:

  1. Green the area in harmony with the rest of our garden city.    
  2. Eliminate a major heat island (the outdoor parking lot at the Rockland Centre).
  3. Ensure the site’s ongoing commercial viability.
  4. Improve traffic flow in a fairly congested sector.
  5. Encourage public transit and active transportation, including to the REM and the Acadie metro station.
  6. Facilitate the installation of a residence for retirees.

What sector is specifically targeted by the PPU?

The boundaries are as follows:

  • Côte-de-Liesse Road to the north
  • De l’Acadie Boulevard to the east
  • To the south, at the limit of the Rockland Centre property and by Brittany Avenue
  • Municipal land corresponding to a green strip to the west

What different uses have been planned for the sector targeted by the PPU?

The PPU suggests expanding existing commercial use to include residential and community use (daycares, seniors’ residences, retirement homes, healthcare facilities), and several local businesses. The various sectors are well-defined in the PPU.

Existing petroleum services are protected by acquired rights.

Proposed surface areas for redevelopment:

  • 20% for park area, green spaces, buffer strip and square
  • 9% for medium-density housing (private or rental properties)
  • 20% for community and high-density housing (private or rental properties)
  • 27% for diversified activities (commercial and mixed use)
  • 24% for infrastructure (streets, access alleys, sidewalks, bike paths)

Will the Rockland Centre be demolished?

A fraction of the Rockland Centre will be partially demolished to clear space for redevelopment. The same is true for its multi-level parking garage.  The commercial use of the Rockland Centre is still important to the redevelopment plan.

What about parking in the future?

The PPU proposes that all new constructions have underground or architecturally integrated parking.

The existing parking lot at the Rockland Centre, which is a major heat island, will be gradually phased out as the sector is redeveloped.

Will future homes in sector 1 face Sloane Avenue? How will they be accessed?

No. New constructions will be accessed via the new traffic lane and will have underground parking. The existing green strip of over 6 m, which separates the Rockland Centre parking lot from Sloane Avenue, will be preserved by the town.  

Future buildings will be located NORTH of Sloane, and criteria will be established to minimize the impact of shade on the neighbourhood, as provided for in the PIIA by-law.  

These new residences are planned to be townhouses (of 2–3 storeys) and will be located perpendicular to Sloane Avenue.

Will a traffic study be taken into consideration?

Yes. The Town contracted CIMA+ to study the traffic issues in the sector, as well as the impact of potential redevelopment, and to provide solutions. The main issues studied were congestion and access to the Metropolitan Expressway, particularly at the intersection of Rockland Road and Côte-de-Liesse Road. The study is available online. It should be noted that the Town has not made any commitment to pursue all of the proposals in the document.

A number of proposed measures are shown in Figure 4.1 of the traffic study (p. 27).

Some of these measures involve other partners, such as the Ministère des Transports du Québec (MTQ) and the City of Montréal. Discussions will be held with them.

What impact is the transformation of the Rockland sector expected to have on existing traffic?

On page 33, the conclusion of the traffic study carried out by CIMA+ indicates that the change to the use of the Rockland Centre should not have a major impact on additional car travel compared to what is currently generated.

The shopping centre parking lot is currently used as a traffic lane between De l’Acadie and Brittany/Rockland: will this lane be preserved?

The existing lane between De l’Acadie and Rockland is not a street but rather a vehicular lane that provides access to the shopping centre parking lot. The lane is planned to be converted into a developed street. The mobility map in the PPU project (map no 9, p. 25) clearly illustrates the new local streets to be developed. It shows that a future street will replace the current vehicular lane, among other things.

Will Sloane Avenue now lead to De l’Acadie?

No, the Town does not intend to connect Sloane and De l’Acadie.

Where will visitors to the new buildings in the Rockland sector park?

For multi-family or community uses, the current zoning by-law already prescribes a minimum amount of parking spaces to be reserved for visitors. For the entire Rockland sector, the Town is now opting for underground parking.

How do alternative modes of transportation fit in?  

The PPU proposes including parking spaces for car sharing, a taxi stand, optimized public transit and electric vehicle charging stations, in addition to focusing on active transportation, such as promoting bike sharing, installing bike racks and effectively accommodating pedestrians.

What does the Rockland PPU have planned for public transit? Does it include a connection to the Réseau express métropolitain (REM)?

The PPU proposes to improve public transit in the sector in general, but as of November 2020, a plan to improve the current service has not yet been established. This point must be studied and evaluated with the various stakeholders.

What about a bike path?

A bike path linking the Rockland sector to the rest of the garden city is provided for in the PPU. A path along Brittany would lead to the new sector to then either head south towards De l’Acadie or towards Markham Park.

What are the heights planned for the PPU?

The vision is to have buildings that will be graduated in height to the north limits of the Town’s territory.

Near the existing built environment, 2–3 storey buildings are planned. Buildings will gradually rise to 8–10 storeys. Two buildings, one 12 storeys and one 14 storeys, are also planned.

What will be the height of the buildings on Brittany?

They will be similar to the height of existing buildings.

Why such densification?

On many occasions, the Town was asked to have new housing units because people want to stay in Mount Royal. The PPU’s vision meets a demand while preserving the Rockland Centre.

How many housing units will be added to the sector?

The PPU is proposing about 1,000 new units (specifically 941 units) plus 200 rooms in a future CHSLD and over 450 housing units in a seniors’ residence.

Will community gardens be kept at this location?

The present Council has already made its position clear and does not want to see the current gardens moved

For information purposes, the Planning Programme already calls for residential appropriation.  

How many parks will be developed and what size(s)?

A total of 3 new parks will be developed:

  • On Brittany, corner of Rockland
  • On Sloane, corner of Rockland
  • On the new public way as an extension of Sloane Park

Approximately 8,150 m² or 7% of the targeted sector.

Why a reference to the Garden City?

Mount Royal exemplifies the concept of a garden city in urban planning. The Rockland PPU draws on Frederick Todd’s original design development concept for both street and green space development.

Would it be possible to allow greenhouses such as the Lufa Farms?

The PPU is proposing such an initiative and it is described in item 2.5 of the action plan.

Will the Town’s infrastructure support the addition of the new housing that will accompany this redevelopment?

The vision presented for this redevelopment extends over a period of approximately 15 to 20 years. The Town considers its current network to be effective. However, improvements may be required by the developer according to the proposed projects for this future redevelopment.

At the municipal services level, the Town has made important investments in parks and green spaces and has invested significantly in the library in recent years. The impending construction of a new community centre with gym, classrooms and indoor pools, will also help maintain the availability and quality of local services offered to all residents.

Is a new school planned for the sector’s redevelopment?

Although the Town made several requests to the Centre de services scolaire Marguerite-Bourgeoys (CSMB) for the addition of a school in its territory, the municipality does not have the jurisdiction to determine where it will be built, as this falls under the authority of the Quebec government.

Does the Rockland PPU process allow the Town to expropriate land or buildings?   

No, the Town did not include a building acquisition program in the Rockland PPU.

Why doesn’t the Town present all the PPUs planned throughout the town now?

The analysis and drafting work of the Rockland PPU took approximately 1 year and is not completed. The next PPU in connection with an entrance to the Town should be the Beaumont PPU, with a 2022 target date.

How will you consult TMR residents?

We are currently consulting with residents. The Quebec government ordered a 15-day written consultation for such matters; however, the Town Council decided on its own initiative to double the written consultation’s deadline, with residents now having until November 30 to submit their comments by email to: townclerk@town.mount-royal.qc.ca.

In addition, on November 5, the Town made a virtual presentation of the Rockland PPU and responded via a live chat during this special webcast to the 70 questions raised by residents interested in the project. A total of 575 participants chose to connect to this webcast at some point during the evening. The recording of this virtual consultation session is available on the Town’s website.

Will concerns raised by residents be considered?

Yes, Town Council members have committed to taking the time to analyze each of the questions and comments received. In addition, the Town Council plans to provide feedback on the consultation process prior to the adoption of the final by-law. The terms of this feedback will be announced once they are known.

Can draft By-law 1440-1 amending Planning Program #1440 with respect to the adoption of a Special Planning Program for the Rockland sector be the subject of a registry or referendum?

The Act Respecting Land use Planning and Development (R.L.R.Q., c. A-19.1) does not provide for the possibility of a register or referendum in the case of a by-law on the adoption of a Special Planning Program (PPU).

The required stages of adoption are as follows:

  • adoption of a draft by-law (completed on October 19, 2020).
  • holding a public meeting on the draft by-law. Due to the pandemic, the government replaced this public meeting with a 15-day written consultation. The Town chose to improve this written consultation with a webcast consultation night with chat (November 5) and the extension of the written consultation by 25 days (until November 30).
  • adoption of final by-law, with or without change.
  • approval of the by-law by the Urban Agglomeration of Montreal.
  • implementation of the by-law.
  • adoption of concordance by-laws, if necessary.