By Tracey Arial
If all goes the way Agropole hopes, five or six of the large companies located in Laval’s Central Industrial Park will agree to have part of their properties transformed into gardens next autumn. That’s what it will take to begin helping improve the air and lower the average summer temperature in the region.
“We’ve identified 60 companies in the area that own their own properties and seem to have space that isn’t being used for employee parking or other uses,” said Nancy Guay, the director of Laval Technopole’s Agropole.
Guay has set up a committee of landscapers, business people and members of the city who are responsible for sustainable development to get the project off the ground.
Along with Guay herself, committee members include: Producer and Landscape Designer Donald Beaulieu, annual and perennial plant supplier Eric Brisebois, Laval horticulture training centre teacher Josée Danis, Laval’s public works officer in charge of green spaces Dany Gariepy, forestry engineer Luc Nadeau, agronomist and tax credit consultant Julie Paquin, Laval’s sustainable environment advisor Jacinthe Rousseau, and Agropole researcher Sophie Limoges.
The group has a $30,000 budget to help market the project to the companies in the project sector. The companies themselves will also be expected to contribute financially or by supplying company employees to help plant the vegetation.
Guay says that she also understands that in addition to this short-term commitment, companies also have to agree to maintain the plantations over the long term. She says that her committee is looking at creating a service to help with this task.
Guay says that she is working with the regional environment expert CRE to link to researchers from the University of Montreal who will study how well the project achieves its long-term objectives.
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