TL;DR A construction site in one Montreal borough has turned out to be completely false, leading to public outrage and further mistrust of Montreal's never-ending construction. Closure signs stayed up on the road for over two weeks. The borough confirmed afterwards that the road should have never been closed off at all.
Although most of us are able tolerate (barely) the construction that is meant to better public spaces, what if some of these designated construction sites were just a lie? An act for the public eye in an attempt to just keep certain areas completely shut off to foot and vehicle traffic?
Well, it looks like it's actually happening on one road in Montreal that's been shut down for over two weeks!
The scene of the false construction site is located near Notre-Dame East, in the borough of Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve. Signs such as "Rue Barrée" and "Circulation Locale Seulement" were placed in the center of Des Ormeux Street for weeks on end.
The only problem? Not a single construction worker in sight. Not even tools or materials that would make one assume some sort of work was happening was at the location. Realizing nothing was going to happen, divers began to bypass all of the signs.
Things still continued to get worse thanks to the fake construction site. Important bus routes had to make detours, even school buses had to wait at the end of the street to pick up and drop off children. Needless to say, Montrealers quickly became outraged that the city would do something like this.
The city issues about 30,000 obstacle permits per year for events like festivals and construction, so we're fairly used to parts of the city being inaccesible. But when it happens to be over two weeks with no sign of work resulting in unnecessary closures, that's when the situation becomes unacceptable.
So, whose fault is it? Well, it turns out that Des Ormeux Street never should have been closed in the first place, according to the Borough of Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve and the Communications Officer.
The only plausible explanation is that due to nearby construction there may have been errors in signage placement. Luckily the roads are open again, but there's still the huge question as to why this took over two weeks to be resolved?
Who knows how many other construction sites across the city are actually empty and completely made-up? Keep an eye out, Montreal.