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  • Hunter Cresswell

Hospital equals more cars, development in Chelsea

More commercial and residential developments to provide homes for workers and more health services near the hospital. More cars on Chelsea’s already congested roads. A possible highway connection between Hwy 5 and 50 through Chelsea and Cantley. And the development within a recognized Gatineau Park ecological corridor along Chelsea Creek.

These are impacts facing the municipality of Chelsea and its residents if the rumoured location of the future regional hospital along Boulevard de la Technologie in the Hautes-Plaines area of Gatineau prove to be true. These effects and more were discussed on March 21 at a press conference in Gatineau where about 30 opponents of Quebec’s rumoured plans to build a 600-bed, three-million-square-foot, $2.5 billion hospital gathered.

The press conference was dominated by a speech from Conseil regional de l’environnement et du développement durable de l’Outaouais – CREDDO – president and former Gatineau mayor Marc Bureau.

“The development will go directly north,” he told gathered press during the Coalition pour un centre hospitalier accessible et durable en Outaouais (CCHADO) March 21 press conference.

CCHADO is a group of businesses and people who are concerned about the hospital plans. CREDDO is one of the member organizations.

“There’s never been a coalition this strong,” Bureau said when asked if he’s witnessed concerted efforts such as this in his eight years as Gatineau mayor.