Club owners and promoters in the Plateau (which contains clubs Blue Dog, Muzique, Belmont, Blizzarts, Bobards and many, many more) have long known that there has been a secret drive to shut down the clubs in the area. This in spite of it being the epicenter of the Montreal club scene. Usually it is the police who crack down by issuing questionable noise complaints. I remember one time when police issued tickets to neighboring bars Blizzarts and Blue Dog because they could not determine where the sound was coming from
It is because of this that the #SAVETHEPLATEAU was started. A social media campaign complaining about the complainers. Click: http://savetheplateau.wordpress.com/ to help the cause. The story as well as who to petition is below.
I also think it is important to not re-elect Luc Ferrandez of Projet Montreal as mayor of the Plateau borough. He has said that he would hire six employees to go out and issue fines. (Now there is a good expenditure of city money.)
I never understood why people flock to move to the trendiest part of the city – which always has the city’s lowest vacancy rate – only to complain about the reasons they moved there in the first place.
A $1,250 fine following a noise complaint has got Plateau-Mont-Royal musician Vincent Stephen-Ong campaigning to “save the Plateau.”
A saxophonist for improvisational group Kalmunity Vibe Collective, Stephen-Ong was playing at the Les Bobards live music venue last Tuesday when the police issued the fine, citing neighbours’ noise complaints.
Since then, Stephen-Ong has launched #SAVETHEPLATEAU, a social media campaign complaining about the complainers.
In a video he made and posted to YouTube, he lamented people moving “to the Plateau because it’s a hip and trendy area of town. Now they don’t want any of the things that made the Plateau hip and trendy in the first place.”
Stephen-Ong continued, saying people moving in near Les Bobards know that it’s a venue that features live music every night of the week.
“If you’re raising kids who have to get up very early, why are you living on St-Laurent and Marie-Anne, in the heart of the Plateau?” Stephen-Ong asked rhetorically on this morning’s Daybreak.
His band has played every Tuesday night since 2011, Stephen-Ong said, and Les Bobards has been hosting live music since 1989.
The venue’s manager and booker Rabah Mammouche said police came to the venue Tuesday night around 11:50 p.m. “because the music could be heard from outside the venue.”
Mammouche said the police told him they received a lot of noise complaints all of the time, but don’t always have time to enforce noise bylaws.
The bar manager said Plateau mayor Luc Ferrandez of Projet Montreal was responsible for the issue.
In July 2010, changes to the Plateau’s noise bylaws and the setting up of the Montreal police’s Projet Noise saw substantial increases in the amount police could fine people or businesses pursuant to noise complaints. Some fines can reach $12,000, up from the previous maximum fine of $1,000.
- First infraction: $1,000 to $3,000
- Second infraction: $3,000 to $6,000
- Third infraction: $6,000 to $12,000
Mammouche said Les Bobards didn’t have a problem with previous borough mayor Helen Fotopulos.
Alex Norris, a Projet Montreal city councillor for the Plateau, told Daybreak there’s hardly a crackdown on live venues and bars in the area.
He said the Plateau is home to hundreds of places that play live or recorded music, and that only a handful of fines have been handed out for noise.
“If the ticket was given in error, that it was unjustified, it should be contested,” he told Daybreak host Mike Finnerty.
Last week, the Journal de Montréal reported that Ferrandez has promised to set up a team of six borough employees to respond nightly to neighbourhood noise complaints and, if necessary, issue fines.
Sample Petition letter:
The Plateau Mont-Royal is full of bars, restaurants, and music venues and is in some ways the cultural and artistic hub of Montreal. Let’s keep it that way! Let’s keep the Montreal scene vibrant! Please write a letter or email to Monsieur Luc Ferrandez, the maire d’arrondissement of the Plateau in an effort to convince him that this is important.
Monsieur Luc Ferrandez
Maire d’arrondissement / Conseiller de la Ville
Projet Montréal (PM)
201, avenue Laurier Est
Téléphone : 514 872-8023
or by email at:
here is a link to all the representatives of the Plateau area, should you wish to write them:
Dear Mr Luc Ferrandez,
The Plateau Mont-Royal is full of bars, restaurants, and music venues and is in some ways the cultural and artistic hub of Montreal. I would like to help keep it that way. I recently attended a show at Les Bobards (corner St-Laurent and Marie-Anne) and it was unfortunately cut short when the police arrived at 11:50pm to respond to a noise complaint. The music was stopped and the bar was fined. Les Bobards, and many other music venues, have been around for years and years and have live music every night of the week. This is no secret and people moving to the neighbourhood know this.
In order to maintain the rich nightlife of the Plateau, and maintain its status as the cultural hub of Montreal, show venues such as Les Bobards must be allowed to have live music. Noise complaints cannot immediately result in a fine when, first of all, the music is kept at a reasonable volume and when, secondly, it is the case of a known music venue that has been in existence for a long period of time.
The Plateau is fun and full of life! I moved here to enjoy what is has to offer! If venues continue to receive fines for spurious noise complaints they will close, and this neighbourhood will lose the charm it once had. Please don’t let this happen.
A concerned Plateau resident.