Milton: A Co-operative Neighborhood

Year Published:  1984  
Resource Type:  Book
Cx Number:  CX3010

Abstract:  Published in honour of the Milton Parc Festivities in September, 1983, this booklet celebrates urban renewal by renovation rather than demolition. It describes the history of the neighbourhood, and the process of its redevelopment. Included are photographs and architectural plans of the variety of buildings which constitute Milton Parc. There are also descriptions of the co-operative nature of the project and its demographic make-up.

Milton Parc is just outside the downtown core of Montreal, close to Mount Royal Park. Targetted as the site of a large urban renewal project in the late 1960s, Milton Parc would have lost 250 homes by demolition. The residents, and 20 non-profit groups successfully organized against the project. In 1979, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation purchased the properties and sold them to the Societe d'amelioration Milton Parc (SAMP) in 1980. Heritage Montreal set up the Societe patrimoine urbain de Montreal (SPUM) to run the project. Both SAMP and SPUM are active as advisors in urban studies, architecture, finance, real estate and co-operation. The Groupe de resource techniques de Milton Parc employs 20 people as social animators, architects, administrators and educators.

From the start, the new project's goal was to renovate the turn-of-the-century houses and return them to the original tenants without large rent increases. By 1983, the renovations were nearly complete. the majority of residents are low-income. Involving more than 20 autonomous but interacting groups, the neighbourhood is run as a co-operative. Milton Parc is an attempt to build a richer more people-oriented social life within an urban setting.