The latest project in Quebec Blue Lagoon Amwaj

(Quebec) The announcement of “géoLAGON”, a vast subdivision of 600 condominiums around a huge heated swimming pool, is causing waves in Charlevoix and is worrying several elected officials.

Posted at 7:00 a.m.

Gabriel Byland

Gabriel Byland

Even at least one mayor has decided to take a public stand against this project. She hopes an outing will spark a discussion about the future of this popular tourist spot.

“This is the first time in my political career that I oppose a project. It’s the first time. But here, it didn’t happen,” declared the former governor and current mayor of Saint-Urbain, Claudette Simard, in an interview.

The current governor of the MRC de Charlevoix says he is “a little surprised at the way this was announced”. Pierre Tremblay, mayor of Les Éboulements, wants to keep some reservations, because he is a Conservative. But according to him, this project raises “questions” and deserves discussion among local elected officials.

The June 7 announcement surprised many Charlevois followers. That day, the promoter geoLAGON announced its intention to build 300 double cabins in Petite-Rivière-Saint-François. These 600 units are partly intended for short-term Airbnb rentals.

The investor agrees to build a “lake” on the land, bounded by Route 138 and a Hydro-Québec high-voltage line, at the axis of Principale Street. This shallow above-ground swimming pool will be heated all year round to 38°C thanks to a mix of clean energies, but will always be connected to the electricity grid. The technology is about to be patented, again according to its promoter.

Photo provided by GEOLAGON

The division will not be in the heart of the village, but rather north of Route 138.

“We want to prove that we can create a village of 2,000 people, completely independent of the energy of the sun and the earth,” explains Louis Massicot, who has similar projects in the Laurentians (in Sainte-Adèle), in Estrie and in Lanaudière. .

On the day of the announcement, the municipality said it had welcomed the project “with enthusiasm”, with members of council being “delighted”.

“There is concern”

However, the project was not received by all citizens either.

“There is anxiety among residents, not just in Petite-Rivières, but even in Baie-Saint-Paul,” said Michael Bilott, mayor of Baie-Saint-Paul.

I am not the mayor of Petite-Rivière, but like everyone else, this raises my concern for the environment, but also for the preservation of the character of Charlevoix. We are a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. We have concerns.

Michel Bilott, Mayor of Baie St Paul

He believes that this project should be discussed in the Council of Mayors of the MRC. The question is simple: “What do we want Charlevois to look like in the future?” asks Mr. Pilot.

The mayoress of Saint-Urbain said she was “shocked” by the press release from Petit-Rivière Saint-François.

“We have been collaborating with Petite-Rivière for many years to set up incredible large-scale projects for the municipality,” says Claudette Simard, referring in particular to the Massif seaside resort or the opening of Club Med.

And there, this project arrived, the MRC was not informed, not even consulted, and he regrets the elected official. The regulations might allow them to do such a project, but it seems to me that we should have discussed it together. »

“We don’t need this”

She wonders if this project is “essential”. “We don’t need it. What we need in our region is to welcome newcomers, to have workers, housing… that’s what I think. I speak with my heart. Above my abilities. I’m really frustrated.

The addition of these 300 double chalets is no small feat for the municipality of 810 inhabitants. Just before the last municipal elections, the town estimated that 300 homes had been built on its territory in… 12 years. Here, the promoter hopes to erect 600 dwellings within a few years.

  • Ultimately, the investor wants to install 300 ready-to-use double chalets in Petite-Rivière-Saint-François.

    Photo provided by GEOLAGON

    Ultimately, the investor wants to install 300 ready-to-use double chalets in Petite-Rivière-Saint-François.

  • Ultimately, the investor wants to install 300 ready-to-use double chalets in Petite-Rivière-Saint-François.

    Photo provided by GEOLAGON

    Ultimately, the investor wants to install 300 ready-to-use double chalets in Petite-Rivière-Saint-François.

1/ 2

The mayor of Petite-Rivière-Saint-François wants to reassure opponents: his support for the project is conditional on obtaining all the necessary permits from the promoter and on respecting the development plan.

” But [le promoteur] Advertising and promotion began to sell his land. There, people realized that we had given the final approval, as explained by Jean-Guy Bouchard. But this is not the case. He has to go through all the steps, and he does. »

The developer indicated on its site that since Tuesday it has sold nearly 60% of the 150 double rental chalets in the first phase of the project.

The Quebec Ministry of Environment and Action on Climate Change (MELCC) is currently unable to determine whether a “geoLAGON,” which must be 120,000 square feet, will need a permit. A spokesperson for the MELCC notes that “the MELCC has not received any license applications and has not been directly informed of these projects”.

Comments are closed.