#mileex #trendy #condos
Amidst the worn-down semi-dilapidated factories just south of Park Extension, east of Outremont, north of Mile End, and west of Little Italy, we find the minuscule area of town still unofficially referred to as Mile Ex. I give it a bit more area by including Jean-Talon street between Park Avenue and St. Laurent, which fits in perfectly with the posh condo-orgasmic feel of the place. Gary Carter Road, facing Jarry Park is a nauseating newly-modernized street that scrapped down all decades-old mostly-vacant buildings to make way for drearily ununique condos. But other than on Gary Carter, Mile Ex’s more populated area is something I’d love to visit as a tourist. It’s a part of Montreal’s unique character and what separates the city from the urban sprawl just north of it. There are businesses nobody knows and little dives you can have a drink at.
I’ve always wanted to live in a loft. And this would have been perfect. A real 1960s style apartment next to a flour factory in the middle of the industrial park. For now, this steam punk part of Mile Ex is staying intact by its fingertips. This illegal English sign (signs in Quebec can’t be only in English) brings a tear to the eyes of a bleeding heart who is going to miss what he grew up with. Not that I grew up near an industrial park, but I was literally on the other side, the seamy side, of the tracks.
This will be the future home of the Science Faculty of the University of Montreal. This will put the new student population officially in the town of Outremont, where other parts of the university are. But the area that will be affected by this will be Mile Ex and perhaps Park Extension or Little Italy.
Getting away from a poor neighbourhood is only good if everyone in that neighbourhood profits from it. If not, it remains a ghetto or, worse, it causes sprawled segregation, where there exist pockets of poverty in most areas of the city surrounded by trendy, rich, and posh areas. If this condo fad moves north, Park Extension will be affected by it. And what will the citizenry do? It’ll be further separated and its opinions will become almost worthless. Its ballot box privilege will be nullified due to their eventually being a small minority of working class people amongst a sea of higher earners.
Here on the corner of Beaubien and Park, the proof is in the pudding.
I love trendy and classic and posh and all the rest of it. But not at the cost and toil of others.
All this to say that we need to keep our Park Extension borders intact.