Pointe-Claire residents won't have to pay extra for living near REM station, city says

The city of Pointe-Claire is assuring residents living near two planned REM light-rail stations in the city won't have to pay extra for the privilege of living there.

A letter was mailed out to about 1,000 property owners earlier this week, with the subject line, 'Dues to be paid to the ARTM [the regional transit authority] for REM stations'. It suggested that the 'dues' would amount to about $108 per square foot, and would be applied progressively until 2021. Half of the amount, the letter suggested, was to have been paid by May 1.

Many residents were confused by the letter, which most of them received this past Monday, believing all residents would essentially have to foot the bill for the construction of the two stations — Sources and Pointe-Claire, to be located along the Trans-Canada Highway.

A spokesperson for the city of Pointe-Claire says only some residents will — those living near the stations who undertake renovations or major construction projects totalling $756,150 or more would have to pay the ARTM, as a way to offset the potential rise in value of their properties.

A spokesperson for the ARTM says the agency planned to collect $600 million worth of dues over 50 years — whichever comes first.

An information meeting on the subject is set to take place at Pointe-Claire city hall on May 14.