31% increase in traffic for pedestrian Wellington
With the return of automobiles to Promenade Wellington, it is now time to take stock for the organizers of the summer pedestrianization of the Well.
From 1er June to September 23, the Société de développement commercial (SDC) Wellington recorded a 31% increase in traffic, compared to the pedestrianization of summer 2021.
This increase even climbed to 52% during certain weekends.
« We can say that it’s mission accomplished! », Immediately launches the director of operations of the SDC Wellington, Julie Pilon-Cousineau.
“People were there. The atmosphere was at its height with our programming, that of Quai 5160, that of Immersion Rock too […]with the enlarged terraces, the improvements that we have made in terms of universal accessibility, embellishment, mobility,” continues Ms. Pilon-Cousineau.
Throughout the summer, citizens could enjoy swings, a petanque court, the extension of the terraces and public islands connected to WiFi, in particular.
Efforts that earned Wellington Street a flattering and unexpected distinction, that of the title of « the coolest street in the world » according to the magazine Time Out.
“We had not sent an application, it happened like that. We suspect that pedestrianization played an important role in this nomination. People are attached to this project […] What we were told was that the people who voted had an extremely strong attachment and pride to the neighborhood, so it stood out. It’s really a great recognition,” said the director of operations of the SDC Wellington.
Always room for improvement
However, many challenges have been added with the significant increase in traffic.
The pilot project of cohabitation between cyclists and pedestrians on the roadway is part of the lot. Several cyclists driving at an unreasonable speed have been observed this summer.
“If pedestrianization returns, we will have to find other partners to find innovative solutions. We had put the pellets on the ground, we had a security agency, there were cadets, a lot of communication, but if we come back, we want to go even further. We want to find solutions instead of banning [les vélos]because the delinquent cyclists were there before the pedestrianization,” says Julie Pilon-Cousineau.
Although the pedestrianization was a great success in terms of traffic, it is still too early to confirm the return of the Well pedestrian in 2023.
« Certain stakeholders have already expressed their interest, including the Borough, citizens and the City of Montreal, but to be a project for everyone, we must consult all of our members at the start of the year, » concludes the Director of Operations.
The 260 merchants on Promenade Wellington, between boulevard LaSalle and 6e Avenue, will be surveyed over the next few months about their level of satisfaction with the pedestrianization project.