Hudson, Quebec, Canada  
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Virtual Hudson
The town of Hudson, Quebec, its places, people and businesses online.





Master Plan, Ferry Service Unchanged, Lavigne House Moving

Off-Island Municipalities Don't Like Master Plan

The Montreal Region master plan continues to make waves. While it seems that Hudson no longer has to have high density development in its centre, there are many other restrictions and directions in the plan which either don't fit Hudson or are mysterious in their intent.

The requirement that railway stations should be surrounded by high density development is still there but, apparently Hudson no longer has a "station" but rather a "theatre". In any case, rumours of high rises are exaggerated since, although Hudson's overall density is low, it is already quite high in areas near the station. Other requirements deal with green spaces, parks, and further development and, for Hudson residents, the whole thing seems to mean that some decisions will no longer be taken locally but rather in distant councils on the island where they will not be represented.

Ferry to Continue Without Dredging

Everything is ready but the paperwork and, as usual, that takes longer than getting the actual work done. The studies are in, the project is approved and the dredging won't take place until the fall. Residents might wonder what all the fuss was about because the dredging is actually going ahead exactly as planned originally. All the hearings, studies and extra studies have not made any difference to the dredging plans but Hudson was able to get an agreement which effectively limits traffic and heavy vehicle use on the new boats.

For the coming summer nothing will change but, come next summer we are likely to see two new 110-foot self-propelled ferries docking on new concrete wharves and finally looking a bit more like the signs which give directions to the ferry. Wonder whether they'll still rent them out for weddings.

Lavigne Historic House to Move to St. Lazare

A lesson for Hudson history buffs and the town planning and architectural control committees: this is how not to do it. The Lavigne house is going to be dismantled and moved to St. Lazare to the corner of Ste. Angelique and de Mon Village, just east of the center of town. While the demolition of the historic home has been avoided, residents wonder whether there might not have been a better outcome. Obviously the protection of Hudson's historic homes has to be more focused, more interventionist and more agressive while at the same time protecting the rights of owners to dispose of their property.

A good first step would be to make an inventory of Hudson buildings which possibly deserve preservation. A good second step would be to initiate discussions with the owners on possible mutually beneficial outcomes. It can't be in anyone's interest to let a wooden house rot, then prevent owners who need the money from selling and finally, after much fuss and bother, lose the house anyway. Perhaps some of these committees should change their focus from coming up with rules and regulations to actual preservation of some key homes.