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30 Crazy Things The City Of Montreal Is Getting In 2017

Just in case you didn't know, today marks the 374th anniversary of Montreal. While that's quite a big milestone, this year's birthday has already been eclipsed by the 2017 celebration of Montreal's 375th anniversary. And rightfully so, because a lot is already on the docket for next year.

Aside from the celebration plans and parties lined up for Montreal's 375th anniversary, tons of new building projects and initiatives have been announced, making us wonder whether or not half of them are going to happen or not.

Sorry, we can't help but be suspicious, because as we all know, this is Montreal, and building projects tend to get delayed quite a bit. That's why we've included the likelihood of these projects being completed, using nothing other than our arbitrary reasoning (along with updates and who was already on-board) to assess each project.

So as a means to both get everyone excited and to keep tabs on everything the city has promised us, here are 30 things Montreal is supposed to have by 2017, for the city's 375th anniversary.

Viaduct 375

An ode to Montreal's railway history, Viaduct 375 is a special project being put on by the Plateau that will have the Van Horne overpass become a pedestrian walkway for events and special walking tours.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

Glowing Lights On The Jacques Cartier Bridge

Pretty, but not all that needed, the City of Montreal announced plans to light up the Jacque-Cartier Bridge with glowing lights last summer, a project that will cost the city $39.5 million. Montrealers sure weren't pleased to hear about this use of money, though.

Likelihood of actually happening: High (unfortunately)

The New Mont-Long Street Art Festival

Come July of 2017, Montreal will play host to a gigantic “open air theatre event” where artists from around the world will perform right on the roads of the city. These artists will provide 800 street performances for any and all who wish to watch, every day for a full month. Read more here.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate-to-High

$15 Million Worth Of New Bike Paths

Announced by the City of Montreal, a $15 million upgrade to the city's bike paths will be completed between 2016-17. 57 kilometers of bike paths will be added, along with a link between the Jacques-Cartier Bridge and de Maisonneuve, bicycle priority lights, and more.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

The Path From Mount Royal To The Old Port

Dubbed “Promenade Fleuve-Montagne,” this proposed 3.8km walkway will link the Saint Lawrence River and Mount Royal, two of Montreal's most iconic features. The path itself will be beautified, and you can read more here.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate

Fixing The Ramps To Nowhere

Folks in Dorval have been mighty pissed about the "ramps to nowhere," as they've been calling the ramps off of Highway 20. The city has promised the construction will be done by 2017, but we wouldn't be surprised if the ramps continued to sail off into the abyss for a bit longer.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate-to-High

A Movie All About Montreal

Titled Hochelaga, terre des âmes, the film will be directed by Francois Girard and will serve as an ode to the founding of Montreal 375 years ago.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

Pretty New Sewer Lids

Yup, even our manhole covers are being prettified for 2017. An idea put forth by Projet Montreal, this project was deemed important enough that the City council actually voted unanimously in approval, so it's almost definitely going to happen.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

The Old Port's $78 Million Makeover

Alexandra Pier and Iberville passenger terminal will be getting some upgrades as the city gears up to its 375th birthday. Better access to the water for both pedestrians and boats will be a feature of the new pier, as will a year-round lookout on the roof of the planned station. Find out more here.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate

Le KM23 du Quartier des Spectacles

Set to be "a flagship project of public art in the Quartier des spectacles," Le KM23 will feature 15 new works of public art and will remain in the entertainment sector of Centre-ville for six weeks. Artworks will be created by both local and international artists.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

The Weird Statues From Quebec City

More than a little creepy, Quebec City is giving Montreal a series of bronze statues that will be housed in a new park on Pie-IX and Sherbrooke. Each statue will be adorned with a jersey that marks an important year for Montreal, making the gift both an ode to the city's sports history and ongoing cultural legacy.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

The Green Energy Public Building

A first for Montreal, the proposed building (which will be housed in Ahunistic's Basile Routhier park) will feature a "net zero" energy system, meaning that the structure will produce its own electricity through solar panels, wind turbines, and geothermal energy.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate

The First-Ever Canada Pride

Because we all need more pride for our LGBTQ+ communities, Montreal is going to play host to the nation's first-ever "Canada Pride." The event will last ten full days over the summer of 2017, and you can read more details here.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

Montreal's "The Wall" Opera

Given the green light by Roger Waters himself, Place des Art is hosting an operatic re-envisioning of Pink Floyd’s iconic album “The Wall,” to be held inside of Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier beginning March 2017. Read more here.

Likelihood of actually happening: Pretty much guaranteed.

The Lachine Canal Ice Rink

Tests were supposedly completed this winter for the giant ice rink to be set up on the Lachine Canal, but we didn't hear any news on the project, so we're a little wary as to whether it's actually going to happen. We can hope, though, because the project sounds pretty sweet.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate-to-Low

A Brand New Saint Catherine Street

Wider sidewalks, free wifi, and heated pathways were all put on the docket for the new Sainte Catherine street, and a lot more. But to get that all done in just a year? Colour us skeptical.

Likelihood of actually happening: Low

The Olympic Stadium Makeover

Focusing on better access to visitors, the Olympic Stadium, and the nearby Espace pour la vie, should be getting a makeover over the next year. An artwork is planned to be placed at the entrance of the stadium, along with an easier-to-understand-and-navigate roadway to the grounds of the complex. Read more here.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate-to-Low

The Biodome's New Look

In relation to the above, the interior of the Biodome is going to be getting a brand new look for 2017, along with the Planetarium, Insectarium, and Botanical Gardens. Different architectural firms will be heading the new additions to each section of Espace pour la vie, and you can check them out here.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate

Bonaventure Expressway Becoming An Urban Boulevard

A revamp of the Bonaventure Expressway, the urban project being called "Boulevard Robert Bourassa" will host green spaces, 9 ground level lanes, pedestrian corridors, and will connect to new bike paths. Construction has already begun, but again, projects tend to get delayed a lot here, so we'll see if this is done by 2017.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate

Parc Jean-Drapeau's Summer Festival Garden Dome

Proposed as a companion structure to the Biodome, this spherical garden-like dome will serve as an amphitheatre during festivals and a chilling space throughout the year. But as beautiful as this would be, we think it's a tad too ambitious to get done by 2017, especially since the city isn't even on-board.

Likelihood of actually happening: Low

Parc Jean-Drapeau's $30 Million Outdoor Amphitheater

What will be a blessing to all those who attend Osheaga, the proposed outdoor amphitheater at Parc Jean-Drapeau will be able to house 65, 000 people and is being designed specifically for festivals. Denis Coderre already approved of the project, but that was back in 2015, and we've yet to really hear any news since.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate

A Cellular Network Across The Metro Network

A joint venture between Rogers, Bell, Telus and Videotron, the four service providers will be splitting the costs of 50 million dollars to install a mobile network that will work in Montreal’s metro stations, trains and tunnels. Since the STM is regularly rolling out stations, we're pretty confident this project will be done by 2017.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

The Holt Renfrew-Ogilvy Mega Luxury Store

From the same folks who brought us Dix30 and Quinze40, the Holt Renfrew-Ogilvy mega luxury store has been proposed for 2017. Not just a store, the building will feature a 250,000 sq. ft. residential tower, along with 50,000 sq. ft of commercial space, 75 luxury condos, and a five-star hotel with a 400-person capacity ballroom.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

The Downtown Fountain Garden Park

Dorchester Square is in desperate need of a makeover. Fortunately one is already ongoing that will ideally be done by 2017. Focusing on the northern section of Dorchester Square, the transformation will cost a total of $709,062. The project will focus on adding an abundance of green to the urban square, while also making it far more accessible and friendly to pedestrians.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate-to-High

Montreal's Giant New Aquatic Centre

Proposed by Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie, the new aquatic center would be more than 43,000 sq.ft and feature offer an 8-lane pool, a jet pool, competitive diving boards, and spectator stands. The thing is, the borough only said it would cover 20% of the $20 million bill, and we haven't heard any funding coming in from the city or province, thus making us pretty sure this project isn't going to be done anytime soon.

Likelihood of actually happening: Low

Paul à Montréal Cartoons

Created by cartoonist Michel Rabagliati, 12 large artistic works will be placed around Plateau-Mont-Royal, each of which will highlight different aspects of Montreal's history.

Likelihood of actually happening: High

WiFi Across The City

As part of its plan to become the smartest city in the entire world by 2017, Montreal's Bureau de la Ville intelligente wants to have free wifi access across the city. We'll see if this project, and the overall goal to be the most intelligent city, actually are achieved, though.

Likelihood of actually happening: Low

The Viger Square Makeover

All that concrete in Viger Square certainly needs to be revamped, and Projet Montreal feels the same way. But while the city's official opposition stated plans to make the space more hospitable, unless we get word from Denis Coderre, we're not going to hold our breath.

Likelihood of actually happening: Low

Montreal Water Taxis

The mayor of Rivière-des-Prairies-Pointe-aux-Trembles really wanted water taxis in 2014, believing them to be a solid means of transportation for those trying to get onto the Island of Montreal. Honestly, the project seemed like a fanciful pipe-dream from the get-go, which is probably why we haven't heard any updates in two years.

Likelihood of actually happening: Low

Quartier des Spectacle's Outdoor Skating Rink

Easily the coolest (pun!) feature of the proposed "Esplanade Park," the outdoor skating rink will be entirely open to the public, with the entire grounds functioning as a "village square" of sorts. The skating rink will be turned into a giant terrasse in the summer months, if it's built, that is.

Likelihood of actually happening: Moderate

Bonus: The MTL Sign On Mount Royal

Never really a possibility, this photoshopped image made the rounds a few years ago and got people in the city very passionate. On the one end, folks wanted to see it happen, and others hated the idea. We still think it’d be cool to have the cross become the “t” in an MTL sign, but in all reality, it ain’t gonna happen.

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