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Towards more sustainable construction
Date:3/1/2013

This press release is available in French.

Montreal, March 1, 2013 Construction in Montreal is under a microscope. Now more than ever, municipal builders need to comply with long-term urban planning goals. The difficulties surrounding massive projects like the Turcot interchange lead Montrealers to wonder if construction in this city is headed in the right direction. New research from Concordia University gives us hope that this could soon be the case if sufficient effort is made.

A team of graduate students from Concordia's Department of Geography, Planning and Environment have developed a watchdog tool that rates the level of compliance between urban planning goals and the environmental impact assessments of development projects. In a study forthcoming in the Environmental Impact Assessment Review, the researchers use this tool to evaluate early proposals for the redevelopment of the Turcot highway interchange. They found that the proposal adopted in 2009 was inadequate for long-term sustainability.

Lead author Undin-Celeste Thompson, explains that, "government agencies often produce statements about their plans, policies, and programs to protect the environment and promote sustainable development. So we began by examining such statements to create a list of environmental goals that were relevant to the Turcot redevelopment."

They then compared the proposal for the Turcot offered by the Quebec Ministry ofTransport (MTQ) with two alternative proposals. "We assigned each proposal a score for each goal, so that we could measure which proposal best met the government's stated objectives, and measure whether a particular proposal would support long-term sustainability goals."

The researchers gave failing marks to the MTQ's 2009 proposal for the redevelopment of the Turcot, saying it was a poor fit with the long-term go
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Contact: Clea Desjardins
clea.desjardins@concordia.ca
514-848-2424
Concordia University
Source:Eurekalert

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