Tag Archives: James-Shaw-Street

The other Cavendish extension

We keep hearing about the Cavendish extension, a long-awaited road link between Ville-Saint-Laurent and Côte-Saint-Luc which will solve a lot of motorist (and public transit) headaches and get some traffic off the oversaturated top of the Decarie Expressway.

But at the other end is a similar connection waiting to happen. This one is much shorter and doesn’t cross any tracks, but residents are complaining of the same problems.

Cavendish extension onto Toupin Blvd.

The issue, as the Chronicle explains, is pure suburban greed. Residents in the northern part, a middle-class neighbourhood of western Cartierville with some very affluent areas, are panicking at the thought of cars taking their boulevard. I’m not quite sure where all this traffic is supposed to go. To the west is the Bois de Saraguay, followed by Highway 13, and to the east is Sacré Coeur Hospital followed by Laurentian Blvd. But hey, outrage doesn’t have to be logical, right? Maybe they just don’t like ambulances on their street.

We’ve seen all this before. James Shaw Street in Beaconsfield, where residents oppose a connection to Highway 40. Broughton Road in Montreal-West, where residents ludicrously complain of giant nonexistent trucks barrelling down the twists and turns of the residential streets to reach a far-off Highway 20. Not to mention at least some opponents of the other Cavendish extension.

Their logic is simple. They have no problem using the streets other people’s homes sit on to drive their SUVs to and from work. But if those other people want to use their streets, suddenly it becomes a child safety issue. Their street deserves protection. Their street must remain a dead-end. For the good of their children.

In case you couldn’t tell by my sarcasm, it’s hypocrisy pure and simple. Greedy suburbanites who want the government to legislate a de facto gated community and have the entire world built around them.

Fortunately, the borough sees right through their arguments. Next time you want to live on a street without traffic, make sure you choose one without “Boulevard” in its name.

UPDATE (Sept. 23): A follow-up story from the Courrier’s Catherine Leroux

UPDATE (Sept. 28): A video posted to YouTube shows traffic on the street, but except for some drivers failing to make complete stops at stop signs, nothing particularly incriminating.

What are you doing driving on my street?

Another day, another group of angry rich homeowners who want nobody to use their streets but them.

James Shaw Street in Beaconsfield, the Cavendish extension, and now residents of Montreal West are upset because one of their roads is being used by people who are not them. And their arguments just don’t hold water.

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West Islanders are never happy

Street planning always seems to have winners and losers. West Islanders who are tired of being stuck in rush-hour traffic are constantly complaining about the missing but long-promised Cavendish extension which would link Ville Saint-Laurent with Cote Saint-Luc, N.D.G., Hampstead and Montreal West.

And I’m sure some of these same people are bemoaning an extension of their own. This Week Beaconsfield voted to open up James Shaw Street (look at all those swimming pools!) to Highway 40 near the Chemin Sainte-Marie exit. The street’s residents are unhappy of course because it means more traffic for their protected suburban enclave.

It’s kind of silly how cities manipulate traffic flow to apease residents’ concerns, even to the point of nonsense.

Take Jacques-Bizard Boulevard for example. One might think that “Boulevard” would mean a lot of vehicular traffic. And a quick look at the street shows it has enough space for a good five lanes of traffic. A look at the map would show that the boulevard leads to a bridge to Ile Bizard on one end, and a medium-traffic street with a blank field beside it which is clearly designed for future expansion into more lanes.

Despite this, people bought houses on Jacques-Bizard Boulevard in Pierrefonds, and its extension Sommerset St. in Dollard des Ormeaux. Then, when the traffic coming off the bridge from Ile Bizard started driving up their wide boulevard, they complained to the city.

My response would probably have been something along the lines of “you know what you were getting into when you bought the place”, but clearly I don’t know how to deal with homeowners. Instead, the city forced all traffic to turn left or right onto Pierrefonds Boulevard, adding to the already clogged St. John’s and St. Charles thoroughfares.

I wonder: what would traffic be like in this city if homeowners weren’t so greedy?