Sunday, June 23, 2024

Tech firm hopes to succeed in deal quickly to protect land in Technoparc

After months of negotiation, environmentalists hope the town will quickly announce a deal to purchase and protect Technoparc land from tech agency.

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After virtually a yr of negotiations, the vice-president of Hypertec is hoping that by the top of this week, the town of Montreal will agree to purchase the ecologically beneficial plot of land north of the Trudeau Airport the place the expertise firm had deliberate to construct its headquarters and important plant.

When she ran for re-election in 2021, Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante promised to work with the federal and provincial governments to create a nature park virtually as massive as Mount Royal Park in lands adjoining to and throughout the Montreal Technoparc. She additionally promised to rezone and preserve all the metropolis’s personal undeveloped holdings in that industrial park so as to add them to the brand new nature park.

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In April of 2023, Hypertec bought 11 hectares in an undeveloped a part of the Technoparc that was and is zoned for growth. Regardless of the corporate’s promise to make its headquarters as environmentally pleasant as attainable, the mission was passionately denounced by environmental teams.

A map showing the Hypertec development inside Des Sources Nature Park

After public outcry that included a letter-writing marketing campaign and an open letter revealed in Le Devoir signed by 200 members of Montreal’s scientific group decrying the corporate’s plan, Hypertec introduced final August it had discovered one other potential location and would promote the land to the town of Montreal for about the identical quantity it had paid: $30 million.

Talks have dragged on for months, with the town interesting to the provincial and federal governments for assist to buy the land.

In an announcement on Tuesday, the Inexperienced Coalition warned that politicians in any respect ranges in addition to Hypertec will bear the blame if Montreal can’t or received’t purchase the land and protect it and if the corporate goes forward with its plan to construct there. Whereas the group credited Hypertec for providing to promote the land to the town for preservation, it warned the corporate and the town that “failure is just not an choice”.

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“Negotiations over the Hypertec sale to the Metropolis of Montreal are ongoing however unsuccessful to date,” the Inexperienced Coalition says. “If these efforts fail, and if Hypertec reverts to the unique plan for his or her new headquarters within the wetlands … the general public backlash is for certain to be ferocious, eloquent and unforgiving. There’ll undoubtedly be loads of blame to go round that may follow our elected politicians in any respect three ranges of presidency and it’s unlikely that Hypertec itself will go unscathed.”

However André Lamarre, govt vice-president of Hypertec, stated his firm has been appearing in good religion. He has stated up to now that the corporate, which has been headquartered in Montreal for 40 years, doesn’t wish to take the mission with its 700 jobs off Montreal Island. The corporate additionally appears able to compromise on the $30 million value for the land, in accordance with a written assertion Lamarre offered to The Gazette on Tuesday.

“Hypertec has been actively discussing the sale of our Technoparc property with the Metropolis of Montreal for near a yr now and could be very appreciative of the involvement of the Authorities of Quebec in wanting to assist resolve this situation.

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“After many discussions, we have now proposed yet one more answer to metropolis officers in a gathering final week, which respects Montreal’s monetary capability by means of a mixture of funding and land donation. Whereas this supply includes substantial concessions from Hypertec, we consider in doing the fitting factor for our group and the atmosphere. We predict a remaining reply to this proposal from the town of Montreal by the top of this week.”

Responding to a request for remark, a spokesperson for the mayor and the manager committee stated: “We’re persevering with our discussions with (the Hypertec lot’s) house owners to make sure that as a lot of their land is protected as attainable. Nevertheless, the town alone can’t make sure the acquisition of pure environments for his or her safety, each within the Technoparc and elsewhere in Montreal. We’re due to this fact persevering with our collaboration with companions and different ranges of presidency to attain this.”

She added that “no different administration has finished as a lot to guard and create inexperienced areas and wetlands and we proceed to make it a precedence.”

The provincial authorities, in the meantime, has been taking part in talks with Hypertec and metropolis of Montreal officers on the difficulty, and a spokesperson for Atmosphere Minister Benoit Charette stated the minister is open to the thought of his division contributing to the acquisition of the lands.

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“Sure, there are discussions underway with the town and the proprietor of the corporate,” stated Charette’s press attaché, Mélina Jalbert. “The discussions are advancing fairly properly however for the second there may be nothing new.”

She stated the federal authorities has not been taking part in these discussions.

A supply near the discussions concerning the Hypertec land stated the federal authorities has formally refused to contribute funds to the town’s mission to buy the land from Hypertec.

The Gazette requested remark from the workplace of federal Atmosphere Minister Steven Guilbeault and from media relations at Atmosphere and Local weather Change Canada, however neither responded by Tuesday night.

The Montreal Metropolitan Group and the federal authorities have made worldwide commitments to guard 30 per cent of their territory by 2030. Solely 23.6 per cent of the Higher Montreal territory stays in a pure state.

mlalonde@postmedia.com

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