Lachine councillor tackles east-end development project

Lachine mayor Claude Dauphin and his borough council found themselves under fire Monday night from a former political ally in the wake of a delay of an already controversial real estate project.

“I just wanted to know how this worked, how it was the city inherited a contaminated park, ” councillor Maja Vodanovic asked her former caucus colleagues during a meeting of the borough council Monday night. “I asked the city (for soil tests) and the city — and my colleagues — didn’t support me. But the director (of the borough) did.”

Vodanovic’s comments come a week after reports that the $1.3 billion VillaNova housing project in east Lachine will be delayed for six months because soil deemed decontaminated has since proved otherwise.

Last week, the Journal de Montréal reported that VillaNova project had been placed on hold after it was discovered that lands slated for construction and designated as having been decontaminated were in fact still polluted with heavy metals.

According to the report, the problem came to light after the borough tested land slated to be the site of a park. The need to carry out the decontamination has resulted in the project’s being delayed by six months, resulting in the first housing units being ready only by 2018, the report said.

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