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Annual report
2016

Logo OCPM

Thanks !

The Office de consultation publique de Montréal (OCPM) would like to thank all of its collaborators who contributed to the promotion of Office activities in 2016.

The OCPM would also like to take this opportunity to thank the groups, organizations, citizens, civil servants and developers who participated in the various public consultations.

The Office owes the success of its public consultations to the involvement of borough and central department employees, professionals, management personnel and elected officials, who gave their help and expertise to help citizens and commissioners to understand the projects and issues involved.

Without everyone’s good will and co-operation, the OCPM’s public consultations would not have achieved their primary goal of providing Montrealers with pertinent information and data on the various projects, with a view to gathering their opinions and comments.

test

President's
Message

The year 2016 marked a significant turning point for the Office de consultation publique de Montréal in terms of the population’s participation in our processes. The three non-regulation consultations entrusted to us by the executive committee and city council, i.e. the continuation of the consultation on reducing Montréal’s dependence on fossil energies, which was the product of the Right of Initiative, the upstream consultation on the Urban, Economic and Social Development Plan (PDUES) for areas surrounding the Turcot interchange, and the one on the Downtown Strategy, have allowed us to carry on our digital approach and inclusion innovations. Those files have set citizen participation records. The high level of interest was apparent both in real-time participation and online processes. This year, the voices of over 6000 people and organizations were heard regarding important issues for the future of Montréal.

Locally and internationally recognized expertise

Our participation successes have not gone unnoticed. In 2016, the OCPM received more requests than ever before to share its experiences and know-how at the local, national and international levels. The recognition of its expertise and credibility now extends far beyond the cases prescribed in the Charter and the boundaries of the Metropolis. In addition to an award for good public participation practices, bestowed by a Brazilian network of cities, and a special mention from the International Observatory on Participatory Democracy (IOPD) for the Vert Mtl process, organizations like the Association internationale des maires francophones (AIMF) and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) call on us to participate in their experiments pertaining to the configuration of participatory and representative democracy. Some newly established bodies, such as Paris Métropole, a collaboration of more than 100 Île-de-France communities, are also developing processes inspired by Montréal’s approach to structure their elected officials’ thinking on citizen participation mechanisms. Some citizens and elected officials of other cities in Québec, such as Gatineau and Québec City, are asking for their own version of an “office de consultation.” The sharing of good practices, constant discussion and ensuing networking help to make us better equipped. They allow us to better document our processes and enrich our practices.

Participation without exclusion

The advent of the contributing citizen, the lightning-quick evolution of our methods for interacting with citizens, and the express wish of elected officials to integrate into our processes new tools, such as 3D modelling, make necessary a review the use made of the public consultation and the means devoted to it in order to conduct debates that are more inclusive, more equitable and more enlightening.

Such objectives require commitment and imagination to increase our public visibility and presence. To that end, the budget of the Office, which has remained the same since its inception, must be indexed to the cost of living to allow it to face new challenges.

2017: a year of celebration, an opportunity not to be missed

The year 2016 ended with the introduction of draft bill on the new status of Metropolis and the recognition of the status of cities as local governments. More and more people are recognizing the importance that Montréal places on participatory democracy. In the context where the recourse to referendum in Montreal is eliminated, the debates on these projects could be an opportunity, if this is the will of our elected representatives, to clarify, or even expand the range of cases where consultation by the Office is automatic.

The year 2017 will mark the 375th anniversary of Montréal and the 15th anniversary of the creation of the OCPM. Our activities in 2016 also aimed to prepare for our part in the celebration and outreach of our metropolis. At this reassessment time, we are happy to have contributed to make our metropolis a modern and open environment whose practices of peaceful citizen debate ensure social cohesion and living together.

Signature

Mission
and mandate

Mission

The mission of the Office de consultation publique de Montréal, created under section 75 of the Charter of Ville de Montréal, is to carry out public consultation mandates with regard to land-use planning and development matters under municipal jurisdiction, and on all projects designated by the city council or executive committee.

Mandate

The Office de consultation publique de Montréal, in operation since September 2002, is an independent organization whose members are neither elected officials nor municipal employees. It receives its mandates from the city council or executive committee.

hand

Activités

jar jar jar

Reduction of Montrealers’ dependence on fossil energies

For this consultation, the Office offered Montrealers an innovative process, marrying traditional consultation methods with collaborative technologies, thereby achieving a success in participation that reached over 3500 people.

Read more

The work of the Office de consultation publique de Montréal is carried out in light of two sections of the Charter of Ville de Montréal, sections 83 and 89. They provide that the Office must hold consultations on mandates it receives according to criteria provided for under the Charter. They also stipulate that the Office must promote best public consultations practices, notably with Montréal authorities.

In 2016, the Office de consultation publique de Montréal completed a consultation initiated in 2015, and undertook and carried out three mandates, as well as two consultation projects to be continued in 2017.

The project completed in 2016 dealt with a very important issue: Montrealers’ dependence on fossil energies. For this consultation, the Office offered Montrealers an innovative process, marrying traditional consultation methods with collaborative technologies, thereby achieving a success in participation that reached over 3500 people.

It was in the wake of requests by a coalition of committed citizens seeking to take advantage of the attention surrounding the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21), scheduled for the end of November 2015 in Paris, that the City asked the OCPM to hold a public consultation on the problem.

The Office then began a process offering everyone user-friendly means to examine their individual and collective choices. Under the theme “Let’s fill up on new energies!” the OCPM relied on the community’s intelligence to identify solutions for Montréal with respect to those issues.

The Office therefore proposed consultation activities conducted in the spirit of crowdsourcing. For the first time, the Office also proposed the testing of an online consultation platform allowing multidirectional discussions among citizens. The online consultation was launched during the information session on October 29, 2015, and the exercise continued until the end of public activities in March 2016.

Other public events were held in the winter of 2016, including a creative marathon in February, where the Office called on technology and environment enthusiasts to identify solutions. After the hearings of opinions in March, the commission drew up its report comprising a series of recommendations addressed to the City as well as its citizens and businesses. The report was made public on June 15, 2016.

Furthermore, three files were undertaken and completed in 2016. The first was carried out in cooperation with the Bureau des relations internationales of the Ville de Montréal and involved a consultation exercise aimed at developing a new international relations strategy. Some 15 meetings were organized, bringing together participants from all sectors of Montréal life with activities or missions comprising an international component. More than 100 people were reached. A summary of the discussions that were held was presented to the Bureau.

Area neighbouring the Turcot interchange - St-Henri Ouest, Émard, Côte-Saint-Paul

This upstream consultation involved a vast planning exercise for a large area neighbouring the Turcot interchange.

Read more

The second file involved a vast planning exercise for a large area neighbouring the Turcot interchange. Under the theme “Beyond the construction: rethinking the neighbourhoods,” a series of activities and meetings were held to solicit the advice of residents and organizations of the neighbourhoods of Saint-Henri Ouest, Émard and Côte-Saint-Paul on what should become of this important section of the Sud-Ouest borough.

More than 2200 people responded to the online questionnaire, participated in the creative workshops and thematic round tables, or followed the public information sessions. Moreover, the commission received 35 briefs and oral presentations during the hearing of opinions period.

Numerous subjects were addressed and the commission received a significant number of quality opinions. Local organizations submitted briefs and actively participated in the various activities. Following those contributions, the commission proposed the vision of an environment inspired by a rich history and turned resolutely towards the future. An environment with a responsible, open and dynamic future, an environment well ensconced in sustainable development, an environment that has managed to lessen the inevitable inconveniences of having highways running through the city. A green environment, having tempered heat islands through massive greening that will make it a model, an example of how to minimize the presence of invasive infrastructures. An environment having resolved the under-provision of healthy products, and developed active and collective transportation. An environment where young and old, local traditional populations and new arrivals, workers of the 2.0 world and those of more traditional factories and industrial workshops harmoniously co-exist. An environment comprising various types of housing meeting the needs of a diverse population. An environment with more common denominators than divisions. The review of the commission’s report should lead the borough to draw up a formal document, a PDUES (urban, economic and social development program), which should be examined by the Office. Such a process belongs upstream of any project to be undertaken by the borough. The territory covered by the future PDUES is transected by several metropolitan infrastructures undergoing major work, such as the Turcot interchange and Highway 15, or enclosing it, such as the Lachine Canal and Canadian National (CN) railway track.

Real estate project on the former site of the Franciscan convent

The third file involved the analysis of a real estate project on the former site of the Franciscan convent.

Read more

The third file involved the analysis of a real estate project on the former site of the Franciscan convent on René-Lévesque Boulevard West. The project consists of 360 housing units and 210 parking spaces on the Franciscan land located at 1980 to 2080 René-Lévesque West, at the southern edge of the Quartier des grands jardins, adjacent to the Saint-Jacques cliff. Two 60-metre-high twin towers on a common basilaire are planned for the site of the former Franciscan convent, which was demolished in 2010 after a fire.

The project also calls for the preservation of the Judah and Masson houses located on either side of the towers, as well as their accommodations and gardens. Lastly, two parks totalling 3363 square metres would be built by the developer and then transferred to the City.

More than 200 participants attended the public consultation meetings, where 50 expressed their opinions, and 42 briefs were filed. The interventions made it possible to fully grasp the issues and challenges involved in the project, in terms of its descriptive elements, integration and impact on the neighbourhood.

The Office believes that the planned change of vocation is acceptable and that it may help to establish the necessary conditions to consolidate the residential function of the neighbourhood and enhance its diversity. However, the interventions brought to light a great deal of disappointment on the part of citizens as to the project’s ability to play a role in the realization of major commitments in the Special Planning Program (SPP) for the Quartier des grands jardins, adopted in May 2012, notably in terms of offering green spaces and community equipment adapted to the needs of families, young people and seniors in the neighbourhood.

The citizens’ concerns are well-founded and the project would only be acceptable if the borough was to set up additional green spaces as soon as possible and ensure that needs for community spaces and collective equipment are met in future projects developed in the neighbourhood.

Downtown Strategy

An upstream public consultation which provides a vision for the future and strategic orientations for downtown Montréal for the next 15 years.

Read more

The Office has also undertaken the examination of another project to be completed in 2017: the examination of the proposed Downtown Strategy, which provides a vision for the future and strategic orientations for downtown Montréal for the next 15 years.

It aims to direct urban growth towards the heart of the metropolitan area by making downtown a more accessible place where one can enjoy life, work, school and entertainment. It plans to optimize the area’s development potential by prioritizing investment in public and active transportation, promoting access to family housing and local services, and enhancing the downtown area’s predominant role in the metropolitan economy.

Following the consultation, the City will draw up an action plan proposing targeted initiatives that will impact the vitality and development of downtown.

The consultation brought about a number of meetings and activities. The first meeting, the “Grand rendez-vous du centre-ville,” was held on Sunday, September 25, at Place des Arts’ Salon urbain. Numerous ideas and projects that will shape the downtown of tomorrow were presented, and the day ended with a formal information meeting on the Downtown Strategy and a public question period. Some 800 people took part in the activity.

The day was followed by four thematic meetings to exchange ideas and offer suggestions involving issues such as transportation, the economy, and neighbourhood life. Several hundred people attended the meetings.

Furthermore, throughout the month of September, citizens were also invited to fill out an online questionnaire, available in both English and French. Close to 2000 people did so.

The hearing of opinions began on November 3. Virtual participation was also made possible through a second online questionnaire. More than 100 people took advantage of the opportunity to share their opinions with the commission.

Training and information activities

The year 2016 also saw the realization of activities related to the promotion of best practices, which is included in the mandate of the Office.

Read more

Institut de développement urbain (IDU), for its members and real estate developers.

The meeting focused on the best ways to prepare for a public consultation with the Office.

Training session for commissioners

It dealt with two issues: the City’s Strategy for the inclusion of affordable housing, and results obtained by using new technologies in public consultations.

Democracy Caravan

The Office also participated on two occasions in an operation promoting the City’s consultation practices, organized by the city council’s Bureau de la présidence. The activity, dubbed the “Democracy Caravan,” allows a neighbourhood’s citizens to learn about the City’s public consultation mechanisms and to talk with the people in charge.

Reduction of Montrealers’ dependence on fossil energies

For this consultation, the Office offered Montrealers an innovative process, marrying traditional consultation methods with collaborative technologies, thereby achieving a success in participation that reached over 3500 people.

The work of the Office de consultation publique de Montréal is carried out in light of two sections of the Charter of Ville de Montréal, sections 83 and 89. They provide that the Office must hold consultations on mandates it receives according to criteria provided for under the Charter. They also stipulate that the Office must promote best public consultations practices, notably with Montréal authorities.

In 2016, the Office de consultation publique de Montréal completed a consultation initiated in 2015, and undertook and carried out three mandates, as well as two consultation projects to be continued in 2017.

The project completed in 2016 dealt with a very important issue: Montrealers’ dependence on fossil energies. For this consultation, the Office offered Montrealers an innovative process, marrying traditional consultation methods with collaborative technologies, thereby achieving a success in participation that reached over 3500 people.

It was in the wake of requests by a coalition of committed citizens seeking to take advantage of the attention surrounding the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21), scheduled for the end of November 2015 in Paris, that the City asked the OCPM to hold a public consultation on the problem.

The Office then began a process offering everyone user-friendly means to examine their individual and collective choices. Under the theme “Let’s fill up on new energies!” the OCPM relied on the community’s intelligence to identify solutions for Montréal with respect to those issues.

The Office therefore proposed consultation activities conducted in the spirit of crowdsourcing. For the first time, the Office also proposed the testing of an online consultation platform allowing multidirectional discussions among citizens. The online consultation was launched during the information session on October 29, 2015, and the exercise continued until the end of public activities in March 2016.

Other public events were held in the winter of 2016, including a creative marathon in February, where the Office called on technology and environment enthusiasts to identify solutions. After the hearings of opinions in March, the commission drew up its report comprising a series of recommendations addressed to the City as well as its citizens and businesses. The report was made public on June 15, 2016.

Furthermore, three files were undertaken and completed in 2016. The first was carried out in cooperation with the Bureau des relations internationales of the Ville de Montréal and involved a consultation exercise aimed at developing a new international relations strategy. Some 15 meetings were organized, bringing together participants from all sectors of Montréal life with activities or missions comprising an international component. More than 100 people were reached. A summary of the discussions that were held was presented to the Bureau.

Area neighbouring the Turcot interchange - St-Henri Ouest, Émard, Côte-Saint-Paul

This upstream consultation involved a vast planning exercise for a large area neighbouring the Turcot interchange.

The second file involved a vast planning exercise for a large area neighbouring the Turcot interchange. Under the theme “Beyond the construction: rethinking the neighbourhoods,” a series of activities and meetings were held to solicit the advice of residents and organizations of the neighbourhoods of Saint-Henri Ouest, Émard and Côte-Saint-Paul on what should become of this important section of the Sud-Ouest borough.

More than 2200 people responded to the online questionnaire, participated in the creative workshops and thematic round tables, or followed the public information sessions. Moreover, the commission received 35 briefs and oral presentations during the hearing of opinions period.

Numerous subjects were addressed and the commission received a significant number of quality opinions. Local organizations submitted briefs and actively participated in the various activities. Following those contributions, the commission proposed the vision of an environment inspired by a rich history and turned resolutely towards the future. An environment with a responsible, open and dynamic future, an environment well ensconced in sustainable development, an environment that has managed to lessen the inevitable inconveniences of having highways running through the city. A green environment, having tempered heat islands through massive greening that will make it a model, an example of how to minimize the presence of invasive infrastructures. An environment having resolved the under-provision of healthy products, and developed active and collective transportation. An environment where young and old, local traditional populations and new arrivals, workers of the 2.0 world and those of more traditional factories and industrial workshops harmoniously co-exist. An environment comprising various types of housing meeting the needs of a diverse population. An environment with more common denominators than divisions. The review of the commission’s report should lead the borough to draw up a formal document, a PDUES (urban, economic and social development program), which should be examined by the Office. Such a process belongs upstream of any project to be undertaken by the borough. The territory covered by the future PDUES is transected by several metropolitan infrastructures undergoing major work, such as the Turcot interchange and Highway 15, or enclosing it, such as the Lachine Canal and Canadian National (CN) railway track.

Real estate project on the former site of the Franciscan convent

The third file involved the analysis of a real estate project on the former site of the Franciscan convent.

The third file involved the analysis of a real estate project on the former site of the Franciscan convent on René-Lévesque Boulevard West. The project consists of 360 housing units and 210 parking spaces on the Franciscan land located at 1980 to 2080 René-Lévesque West, at the southern edge of the Quartier des grands jardins, adjacent to the Saint-Jacques cliff. Two 60-metre-high twin towers on a common basilaire are planned for the site of the former Franciscan convent, which was demolished in 2010 after a fire.

The project also calls for the preservation of the Judah and Masson houses located on either side of the towers, as well as their accommodations and gardens. Lastly, two parks totalling 3363 square metres would be built by the developer and then transferred to the City.

More than 200 participants attended the public consultation meetings, where 50 expressed their opinions, and 42 briefs were filed. The interventions made it possible to fully grasp the issues and challenges involved in the project, in terms of its descriptive elements, integration and impact on the neighbourhood.

The Office believes that the planned change of vocation is acceptable and that it may help to establish the necessary conditions to consolidate the residential function of the neighbourhood and enhance its diversity. However, the interventions brought to light a great deal of disappointment on the part of citizens as to the project’s ability to play a role in the realization of major commitments in the Special Planning Program (SPP) for the Quartier des grands jardins, adopted in May 2012, notably in terms of offering green spaces and community equipment adapted to the needs of families, young people and seniors in the neighbourhood.

The citizens’ concerns are well-founded and the project would only be acceptable if the borough was to set up additional green spaces as soon as possible and ensure that needs for community spaces and collective equipment are met in future projects developed in the neighbourhood.

Downtown Strategy

An upstream public consultation which provides a vision for the future and strategic orientations for downtown Montréal for the next 15 years.

The Office has also undertaken the examination of another project to be completed in 2017: the examination of the proposed Downtown Strategy, which provides a vision for the future and strategic orientations for downtown Montréal for the next 15 years.

It aims to direct urban growth towards the heart of the metropolitan area by making downtown a more accessible place where one can enjoy life, work, school and entertainment. It plans to optimize the area’s development potential by prioritizing investment in public and active transportation, promoting access to family housing and local services, and enhancing the downtown area’s predominant role in the metropolitan economy.

Following the consultation, the City will draw up an action plan proposing targeted initiatives that will impact the vitality and development of downtown.

The consultation brought about a number of meetings and activities. The first meeting, the “Grand rendez-vous du centre-ville,” was held on Sunday, September 25, at Place des Arts’ Salon urbain. Numerous ideas and projects that will shape the downtown of tomorrow were presented, and the day ended with a formal information meeting on the Downtown Strategy and a public question period. Some 800 people took part in the activity.

The day was followed by four thematic meetings to exchange ideas and offer suggestions involving issues such as transportation, the economy, and neighbourhood life. Several hundred people attended the meetings.

Furthermore, throughout the month of September, citizens were also invited to fill out an online questionnaire, available in both English and French. Close to 2000 people did so.

The hearing of opinions began on November 3. Virtual participation was also made possible through a second online questionnaire. More than 100 people took advantage of the opportunity to share their opinions with the commission.

Training and information activities

The year 2016 also saw the realization of activities related to the promotion of best practices, which is included in the mandate of the Office.

Institut de développement urbain (IDU), for its members and real estate developers.

The meeting focused on the best ways to prepare for a public consultation with the Office.

Training session for commissioners

It dealt with two issues: the City’s Strategy for the inclusion of affordable housing, and results obtained by using new technologies in public consultations.

Democracy Caravan

The Office also participated on two occasions in an operation promoting the City’s consultation practices, organized by the city council’s Bureau de la présidence. The activity, dubbed the “Democracy Caravan,” allows a neighbourhood’s citizens to learn about the City’s public consultation mechanisms and to talk with the people in charge.

Communications overview

speaker

The OCPM informs citizens of any upcoming public consultations. Depending on the nature and scope of the consultation, a wide range of communication tools are employed to reach people and provide them with user-friendly, accessible information.

As there were few regulation mandates in 2016, the Office published only one public notice in a daily newspaper. It issued a total of 21 press releases and media invitations. For every public consultation, an advertising campaign was conducted on Facebook. In some cases, in addition to the notices, the Office also sends out invitations directly to citizens and organizations concerned by the ongoing consultation project. Usually, the Office distributes information flyers announcing the consultation to those who will be affected by a given project. Depending on the consultation, the distribution may cover between 1500 and 68,000 homes. Last year, 114,000 flyers were distributed in sectors neighbouring projects that were the subject of consultations. Flyers and posters were also distributed to concerned organizations and in Ville de Montréal service points. The OCPM Web site continues to regularly inform citizens and groups interested in public consultations. As our Web site received a complete overhaul in 2016, it will be the subject of a special section in this annual report.

The Office is increasingly relying on social networks to promote its activities with Montrealers. We regularly use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Flickr. However, Facebook is the one that stands out, owing to its popularity and the effectiveness of our interactions with the community on that network. It also provides us with powerful advertising tools, allowing us to precisely target the citizens concerned with our consultations. The number of subscribers to our page has grown by more than 1500 people this year, reaching 7826 by the end of 2016. Over 32,000 people have interacted with our page (an increase of 60% compared with 2015), while the total reach of our publications is approximately 1.5M, i.e. the number of people who saw any content associated with our page (the last two statistics represent unique users/day).

In terms of print publications, we ended the year with the offer of a new educational tool: The follow-up. A Montrealer’s guide to what happens after a public consultation. Available in English and French versions in the Publications section of our Web site, the guide joins our offering of educational resources, all of which are available online and in print.

Every year, we improve our universal accessibility service offer. This year saw the culmination of several years’ work with the launch of an improved universal access section on our Web site and the distribution of an instructional kit to promote the information and participation of publics at risk of exclusion.

More than 150 model kits were provided to organizations, groups and schools involved in francization, integration and literacy, in addition to being distributed in public libraries. Each kit contains documents written in easy to understand language: an introduction to the OCPM, its rules of professional conduct and an information guide, the OCPM 10-year anniversary brochure and a CD with video presentations designed to inform people about the role of the Office, the public consultation process, and how to participate in a public consultation. To access the above-mentioned resources, or documents in Braille and videos in Québec sign language, all of which are available only in French, follow the pink butterfly on our site.

Online consultation

In addition to the online public consultation questionnaires, for which we have developed an expertise over the years, and which, again this year, gave us major participation successes (Areas neighbouring Turcot: 1574 responders; Downtown Strategy: 1811 responders), we also carried out two new online participation processes.

Our first public consultation experience with a real online consultation platform, which began in 2015 with vertMtl.org as part of the consultation on reducing dependence on fossil energies, continued until the beginning of March. That digital tool allowed citizens to interact around the proposals, to affirm their agreement or disagreement, to support arguments and to provide references. More than 1600 unique visitors came by in 2016 (in addition to the 4000 in 2015). Launched on October 29, 2015, the online consultation gave rise to 5000 interventions (new proposals and support for listed proposals) in four months. Throughout the experience, the Office gathered a large number of positive impressions from citizens who were enthusiastic about this tool that allowed them to participate in the consultation from anywhere, at any time of day, and as often as they wanted.

Lastly, the consultation on the Downtown Strategy provided us with an opportunity to offer citizens yet another means of contributing to our consultations by expressing their opinions online in a section of our Internet site dedicated to that purpose. Participants were able to send us thematic mini-memos to further explore the priorities brought to light by the online questionnaire administered earlier in the consultation process, and offer suggestions in response to questions drawn up by the commissioners.

Web site

This year, the Office de consultation publique carried out a major redesign of its Web site. The goal of the exercise was not only to raise the platform to the level of Web industry standards, but also to renew and rethink the user experience.

The redesign that began in 2015 culminated in the delivery of the site’s final version in March 2016, thereby completing the first major phase of its restructuring. Following the comments and suggestions of users invited to participate in the reflection process, the new structure was designed to be open to additional functionalities more in line with the needs of new consultation methods tried out by the Office.

The new version of the site offers the Office greater flexibility, both in terms of data organization and public interaction possibilities. With a collection of more than 15,000 documents spanning 15 years of public consultation, and almost 30,000 unique visitors in 2016, the Office platform remains a documentary reference in urban planning and citizen participation in Montréal.

External
relations

cloud cloud plane trail

Since its establishment in 2002, the Office has developed a network of contacts in organizations with missions similar to its own, contacts that have helped to improve the OCPM’s methods of operation. The external activities of the Office promote skill dissemination, development and the sharing of Montrealers’ experiences.

Locally and throughout Québec, the Office responds to requests from groups seeking to better understand the OCPM model; we have attended meetings in Montréal, Québec City and Gatineau. We have also met new contacts within the framework of the World Social Forum, in addition to participating in one of its workshops. We hosted a group of young French participants as well as one of the Forum founders, Mr. Oded Grajew, the director of the organization “Cidades Sustentaveis” in Sao Paulo, Brazil. In 2016, Montréal also hosted the North American conference of the International Association for Public Participation, of which the Office is a member. The OCPM was very involved in the meeting’s organizing committee, and participated in the event with an information kiosk and presentations of our activities during workshops. The Office also participated in the activities of the Centre d’écologie urbaine de Montréal, and attended the New Cities Summit, held in Montréal this year.

In the month of April, the Office de consultation publique de Montréal took part, for the third time, in the biennial exposition Le Montréal du Futur, held at Complexe Desjardins from April 20 to 25 last. Organized by BOMA QUÉBEC (the Association des propriétaires et des administrateurs d’immeubles du Québec) and in partnership with the Caisse Desjardins, the exposition aimed to provide the Montreal public with an architectural vision for Montréal in the future by presenting commercial, residential and institutional real estate projects that could become part of the Montréal landscape over the coming years. Even though some projects showcased in the exposition were already in progress, all the projects presented were not necessarily approved and will not necessarily be realized.

On April 22, in order to better illustrate how the OCPM conducts its creative workshops, an Office moderator gave a workshop that lasted a few hours for visitors who wished to participate. The latter were given a map and Legos to illustrate their ideas. The kiosk was a major success, with an estimated 75,000 visitors for this 6th edition.

The Office also provided a presence abroad in various forums throughout the year, beginning with the presentation in January of the first prize for good public participation practices, international category, awarded by the Brazilian network of participatory budget cities. The secretary general accepted the prize in the name of the OCPM at the network’s annual meeting, in addition to presenting our model at one of the workshops. The Office, as it has traditionally for many years, also attended the annual conference of the International Observatory on Participatory Democracy (IOPD), held in Matola, Mozambique. The conference was important for the Office in two respects. It received a special mention as a finalist for the IOPD’s annual prize for best practices and, more importantly, it secured Montréal’s appointment to the presidency of the Observatory for a one-year mandate, which includes the responsibility for the next conference, to be held in Montréal from June 16 to 19, 2017.

Meetings were held at the General Secretariat of the Observatory in Barcelona in the weeks following the conference to agree on organizational procedures for the Montréal conference, whose theme will be “Participation without Exclusion.”

In addition to the IOPD, the Office was called to participate in a few other missions. The first, in Paris, Lyon and Amsterdam, involved meeting with various French partners, including Greater Lyon and Décider ensemble, and presenting our model within the context of the reflection process on public consultation in Paris Métropole. The latter is interested in the OCPM model, and pursued that interest through discussions with both the Office and Montréal elected officials. The Amsterdam portion of the mission allowed us to discuss digital participation tools with participants in the Design and the City Conference, particularly within the Seminar on Smart City and through a presentation at a workshop entitled “Prototyping for Citizen Engagement: how to empower citizens for social changes.”

Moreover, at the request of the AIMF (Association internationale des maires francophones), Office secretary general Luc Doray participated in a seminar in Yamoussoukro, on the Ivory Coast, addressed to mayors of a number of West African countries. Mr. Doray spoke there about practices that allow elected officials to consult the population.

Office president Dominique Ollivier accepted an invitation from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to participate in two seminars, held in Morocco in September, dealing with women’s participation in political life and the need for a link between participatory democracy and representative democracy.

In December, she also participated in the 5th national meetings “Accueil et Relations aux Usagers,” [user reception and relations] in Lyon, and in the Open Government Partnership Global Summit at the beginning of the month. She was there both in the name of the IOPD, to present a workshop on public participation using digital means, and in the name of the OCPM, in response to an invitation from the Commission nationale du débat public (CNDP) to sit on a panel addressing the topic “Participation citoyenne et démocratie mondiale: comment associer les citoyens au respect des engagements pris par les gouvernements dans l’Accord de Paris?” [citizen participation and global democracy: how to involve citizens in respecting commitments made by the governments in the Paris Agreement]. At the same time, she met with representatives of the Council of Europe and the OECD, notably with a view to future cooperation and participation in the IOPD conference in June 2017.

Lastly, Ms. Ollivier and Mr. Doray took part in a virtual seminar with representatives of the Federal District of Mexico dealing with the operations of the Office. The Mexican participants included department directors and the Director of the School of Public Administration of Mexico City. The activity was held within the context of the recent protocol for cooperation between Montréal and the Mexican capital.

Throughout the year, the Office is also invited to present its role and activities to various groups. Firstly, to the Committee of the présidence du conseil municipal, before which the Office president presents the report of activities and discusses the work of the OCPM and its future orientations with members of the committee. Meetings are also held with a wide variety of groups: students and groups of citizens interested in public consultation, in several boroughs, as well as external groups. In the latter category, it is important to note the presence, as a special speaker, of Ms. Ollivier at the day of reflection of the newspaper Les Affaires dealing with social acceptance.

Budget

Balance Balance Balance Balance

In compliance with the Charter of Ville de Montréal, the city council provides the Office with the funds required to carry out its mandate. Under sections 83 and 89 of the Charter, the Office must hold all consultations requested by the executive committee or city council. The financial statements of the OCPM are audited by the auditor of the city and presented to city council.

In 2016, the Office was allocated a budget of $2 million. This amount is meant to cover all budgetary items: the remuneration of commissioners and permanent staff; the fees of analysts/researchers and other professional resources required to hold public consultations; the publication of public notices; the printing of commission reports; rent for the offices; and general administrative expenses.

The amount was sufficient to carry out all of the mandates and activities of the Office in 2016.

Staff and collaborators in 2016

team

Staff

  • Louis-Alexandre Cazal
  • Luc Doray
  • Lizon Levesque
  • Élise Naud
  • Faustin Nsabimana
  • Jimmy Paquet-Cormier
  • Anik Pouliot
  • Gilles Vézina

Collaborators

  • Raphaëlle Aubin
  • Matthieu Bardin
  • Estelle Beaudry
  • Alain Benoit
  • Loïc Bouffard-Dumas
  • Brunelle-Amélie Bourque
  • Élisabeth Doyon
  • Julie Dubé
  • Louis Garneau
  • Guy Grenier
  • Félix Hébert
  • Félix Jobin
  • Laurent Maurice Lafontant
  • Christelle Lollier-Théberge
  • Patrice Martin
  • Francis Miller
  • Denise Mumporeze
  • Olivier Rinfret
  • Karl Skelton
  • Nicole Uwimana
  • Akos Verboczy
  • Stéfanie Wells

Credits

Redaction

  • Luc Doray
  • Brunelle-Amélie Bourque
  • Louis-Alexandre Cazal
  • Luc Doray
  • Lizon Levesque
  • Anik Pouliot
  • Gilles Vézina

Revision

  • Lizon Levesque
  • Traduction
  • Joanne Gibbs
  • Photographies
  • Lucie Bataille
  • Josée Lecompte
  • Frédéric Tougas

Graphic design

  • Élisabeth Doyon

Web development

  • Alain Benoit