10 Reasons Meadowbrook Must be Saved
1. Rare Natural Beauty: Meadowbrook is exquisitely beautiful with ancient trees, natural brooks and abundant park like greenery. There is precious little environmentally viable land left on the island of Montreal and even less in the largely built up south-western region. To have such a delightfully natural space in this area is a gift that we must not squander.
2. Enjoyment of the People Living in the Area: Currently Meadowbrook is a golf course enjoyed by hundreds of people on a daily basis in the summer and by cross-country skiers and hikers in the off-season. The proximity of this green space makes it possible for people in this area to have regular contact with an uplifting natural setting. As a park, Meadowbrook would be accessible to thousands more people for walking, biking, nature studies, pick-nicks and much more. Well over 200,000 Montrealers live within 8 kilometers of Meadowbrook and the physical and psychological benefits it can bring to them and their children for many years into the future are immeasurable.
3. Biodiversity: The City of Montreal, in this international year of Biodiversity, boasts of a commitment to preserving biodiversity. Meadowbrook has a potential for biodiversity unlike any other in the region. It is the last green space in the greater South-western Montreal region which could easily be naturalized in order to offer a rich biodiversity and be essential for migrating birds. The city however, by accepting this development, would sacrifice both its ecological principles and our common heritage for a developer’s private gain.
4. Public Health: Montreal’s own Direction de Santé Publique states that proximity to green spaces leads to cooler temperatures and better health while allowing the population to do physical activity.
5. Archeological potential: Meadowbrook has a major archeological potential and, as a result, no intervention modifying the soil should be done without having archeological digs prior.
6. Economic potential: The potential sums associated with nature related recreation and tourism in the metropolitan Montreal Community numbers in the billions of dollars annually. These could play a major role for the revitalization of the Saint-Pierre neighborhood of Lachine.
7. Ease of creating a park: Meadowbrook could easily be naturalized and become an ecological park.
8. Greenway (Trame Verte): Meadowbrook should be part of a larger ‘trame verte’ connecting it to the ‘falaise Saint-Jacques’, as recommended by the Labrecque Commission in 2009, which would multiply its public accessibility and have many other benefits including ecological, environmental, social, recreational, tourism related and economic.
9. Demographics: The City and Island are losing families to the suburbs. Destroying our green spaces will accelerate the trend, while preserving and enhancing them provides the quality of life that will reverse it.
10. Constraints preventing a development: The questions of security linked to the rail yards, the sound pollution and the exorbitant costs linked to making the site both safe and accessible are major hurdles to any development.