A new residential neighbourhood is coming to Montreal on the site where the Molson Brewery stands today.
The city has reached an agreement with developer consortium Selection Group and Montoni for an area that will include a riverside park and a school, built on land the brewery has occupied since 1786.
The neighbourhood will feature 3,000-4,000 new homes, with 200 of them reserved for affordable social housing as part of the agreement.
The sprawling Molson site is more than 100,000 square metres large – the size of about 17 football fields – and is located south of Notre-Dame St. between Old Montreal and Papineau Ave. in the east.
The city used its new powers as a metropolis to negotiate with Molson-Coors and the consortium.
There was general agreement, said Mayor Valerie Plante, to create a neighbourhood that includes green spaces, services and a mixed commercial/residential feeling.
“With Molson, they were sharing this vision. We are demonstrating that yes, promoters and the city can work together,” said Plante.
In exchange for allowing the consortium to buy most of the lots to build condos, the city received some of the land for free with plans for a park near the river, a riverside promenade and bike path.
"The addition of a park covering 13200 m2 is one of the many examples of how beneficial this project will be, not only for future residents, but also for all Montrealers wishing for better access to the river," the consortium said in a news release.
There will also be space reserved for a school and community centre.
"From the start, our objective has been to create a true sense of community, where everyone can thrive and enjoy common high-quality spaces," said Selection Group CEO Real Bouclin, in a statement.
The deal stands in contrast to other neighbourhoods that were developed in recent years, said Plante.
“To think about people’s needs afterwards. I’m thinking about the children, which was a very painful experience for me when I was sitting here at borough council. Even Griffintown, where there’s been a lot of development in terms of housing, but then no parks, no schools. Things were missing,” she said.
The Molson Brewery doesn't move to its new home in Longueuil until next year, although its head office will remain on the historic Montreal site.
The new neighbourhood is not expected to be completed until 2035.
More details on the plans are available from the city here and from the consortium here.
- With reporting from CTV Montreal's Max Harrold