Park Ave Corridor Development Strategy
With the completion of our contextual analysis, and the identification of our vision statement, section three of the Avenue du Parc Light Rail Transit proposal outlines a number of objectives and strategies that will help reinforce the primary neighbourhood functions within the transit corridor. These strategies are intended to enhance, support and provide additional opportunities for local and regional residents to LIVE, LEARN, WORK and PLAY.
The following section will be broken down into four parts:
Section 3.1 will briefly describe how the LRT will be introduced within Avenue du Parc.
Section 3.2 will describe how a balanced transportation system will be achieved.
Section 3.3 will explain how the LRT will be integrated into the corridor.
Section 3.4 will identify opportunities to enhance the vibrancy of the corridor.
Section 3.5 will Introduce the Master Plan.
3.1 Introducing LRT Technology
The proposed Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line will be situated on the west side of Avenue du Parc and utilize a third of the existing roadway. However, due to the width of the roadway, both tracks (north and south bound) will be placed side-by-side to reduce the amount of road space required.
Line: Priority Measures
To ensure that the proposed LRT increases transit ridership and reduces commute time, measures will be implemented throughout the corridor. We propose to locate the LRT line within a designated Right of Way (ROW) and establish priority measures at all major intersections throughout the corridor; including signal priority and sequenced traffic lights.
The proposed Light Rail Transit stations and stops will be located at all major intersections and cross paths within the corridor. As indicated in figure 1, boarding on for the south bound trains will take place on an enlarged sidewalk, while boarding for the North bound trains will take place on a 3m wide median.
Each station within the corridor will be designed to reflect the neighbourhood character and be visually unobtrusive. Furthermore, all station will be designed to facilitate multi-door loading, prepaid fare and at-grade entrances.
3.2 Balanced Transportation System
Objective – Reduce Automobile Dominance
Strategy- Decrease the number of traffic and parking lanes
Presently, Avenue du Parc is a major regional thoroughfare that connects Montreal residents to the Central Business District and other important cultural, educational and tourist destinations. Over the past several decades, the corridor’s primary function has been to facilitate the movement of vehicle traffic through the project area. Consequently, the following strategy proposes to reduce automobile dominance within the corridor by reallocating the amount of road space currently dedicated to automobiles. As indicated by figures 1 and 2 (cross section of du Parc at St-Viateur) the number of traffic lanes will be reduced from 3 to 2 and only one lane of parking will be provided. We believe that this strategy will create a balance between both the regional and local commuters and the various modes of transportation.
Objective – Enhance Public Transportation Service
Strategy- Increase connectivity between passengers origin and destination
Due to the importance of public transportation within the project area, the existing transit service will be enhanced to achieve the goal of a balanced transportation system. As a result, the following strategy proposes to increase connectivity between passenger’s origin and destination. To accomplish this strategy, LRT station and stops will be
strategically located at all major cross paths, including; St-Viateur, Laurier, Mont Royal, Duluth, Prince Arthur, Sherbrooke, De Maisonneuve, St. Catherine and Rene Levesque. We believe that this intervention will maximize potential connections to both existing and proposed public transportation services operating within the area, including the Place des Arts metro station, various East/West bus lines and the proposed Mont Royal and Rene Levesque LRT lines.
Objective – Increase Pedestrian Priority and Safety
Strategy – Reconfigure select intersections to reduce potential conflict with automobiles.
With regards to pedestrian movements, creating a balanced transportation system will require increased pedestrian priority and safety throughout the corridor. To achieve this objective, several intersections within the corridor will be reconfigured to reduce potential conflict between automobile traffic and pedestrians. This strategy will include the implementation and construction of curb bulges, cross-walk markings and textured surfaces, and possibly scrambled intersections.
Strategy – Improve pedestrian walk-ability through structural enhancements.
Currently, certain areas within the corridor have narrow sidewalks and very few pedestrian amenities. To enhance pedestrian movements along these commercial and retail sections of the corridor, pedestrian walk-ability will be improved through a number of structural enhancements such as sidewalk widening, benches, and shading.
Objective – Integrate Land-Use Planning with Investments in Transportation
Strategy- Focus higher density, mixed-use developments around proposed LRT stations and stops.
In order to fully capitalize on the integration of LRT technology within the Avenue du Parc Corridor, an integrated land-use plan will be incorporated within our proposal. Due the size, scope and cost of constructing an LRT line, the City of Montréal will undoubtedly want realize an increase in both population density and tax revenue within the project area. As a result, the following intervention proposes to develop areas around LRT stations and stops to create focal points within the corridor. As illustrated by figures 9 and 10, mixed-use, medium density buildings will be located along the corridor, with higher density being situated at Laurier and St-Viateur stops. Although this is a long range proposal, regulatory measures will need to be established to ensure all future developments meet the objectives and needs of both The City of Montréal and local residents.
Objective – Use Transit Investment as Catalyst to Capitalize on Unused Density
Strategy- Identify opportunities for infill development.
The construction of the LRT along Avenue du Parc will have a desirable impact on land values within the corridor. The following strategy proposes to identify sites within the project area that have unused development potential. Although the project area is nearly completely developed, a number of infill opportunities have been identified within our analysis. As a result, these specific areas will be included within the integrated land-use plan to ensure that all new developments contribute to the area’s long range plans.
3.4 Create Vibrant Places
Objective – Enhance Street Life to Provide Opportunities for Civic Engagement
Strategy – Increase active store frontages, outdoor cafes and gathering places for social interaction.
Presently, the Avenue du Parc corridor has several unique neighbourhood characteristics and places of interest. Therefore, proposed efforts to create vibrant places will merely build upon what is already occurring within the project area. The following strategies are intended to enhance the street life within the corridor and provide additional opportunities for civic engagement. Consequently, we propose that all new development projects within the station catchment areas (200m for downtown stations and 400m for stations North of Sherbrooke) provide opportunities for cafes and restaurants and are designed to include active store frontages.
Objective – Enhance the Regional Destinations within Corridor
Strategy – Increase the accessibility of Mont Royal Parc.
Within the project area there area a number of regional destinations. To achieve the goal of creating vibrant places within the corridor, these destinations will be enhanced to increase their significance. We propose to create an entrance to Mont Royal Parc at the intersection of Mont Royal and Avenue du Parc. It is believed that this strategy will help to increase the accessibility of the park and promote the Avenue du Parc corridor.
Strategy – Create an Urban Plaza at the Place des Arts Interchange
In addition to Mont Royal Parc, Quartier des Spectacle (QDS) is also located within the project area. As a result, we recommend creating an urban plaza at the Place des Arts interchange to enhance the regional significance of this area. To ensure that this strategy is visually consistent with its surrounding area, design themes established within QDS will be applied to station plans.