The Borough was demanding the closure of a place of worship established for many years, in a zone where this type of activity was not permitted.  The leaders of the association managing this place sought our intervention.  They were asking that the Borough modify its zoning rules for this place of worship to be allowed to continue its activities, in the same location.

It is not up to the Ombudsman to decide which amendments should or could be made to zoning regulations.  This jurisdiction lies with the Borough Councils.  We informed the plaintiffs accordingly and closed our file.

However, the Borough’s elected officials later announced their intent to expand the zones in which places of worship would be permitted, namely on the second floors in some commercial areas.  These regulatory amendments would regularize the situation of the place of worship which had complained to our office.

Since our office often handles complaints regarding problems of cohabitation between residences, businesses, institutions and places of worship, we deemed it appropriate to submit comments to the Borough administration and elected officials so as to provide additional input and remind them of undertakings contained in the Montréal Charter of Rights and Responsibilities.

More particularly, we raised awareness on the importance of planning reasonable guidelines and specific rules to ensure the safety of the premises, the cleanliness of the area, the adequate management of possible nuisances (noise, traffic, parking), thereby promoting harmony among all citizens.  The Borough welcomed our comments.

We apologize but this Website is available in French only.