Since the arrival of Projet Montréal on the Plateau, Maeva Vilain has seen her neighborhood transform visibly and residents’ quality of life improve: greening, safe travel, more room for bicycles. As a former aide to federal deputy Alexandre Boulerice, she already knew how demanding the life of an elected official can be. In 2017, Maeva won the position of Jeanne-Mance borough councilor. She is happy to report that working at the municipal level is ideal for family-work balance; as a mother of two, Maeva enjoys coming home each evening and seeing her children benefit from her work.
On the Plateau, Maeva is fortunate to be part of a mature Projet Montréal team. Making decisions with 7 people is always a challenge, but it is possible with a lot of listening and constructive discussions. As she lives in the borough and her children attend local schools, Maeva is very present on the ground and always listening to her fellow citizens. The proposals she receives are often ambitious: many people are demanding major changes to fight climate change, even if it means making sacrifices to achieve them. Maeva is excited about making a difference locally and finds it motivating to be on the front lines of Montreal's transformation.
Maeva sits on three city commissions: transportation and public works; water, environment, sustainable development and large parks; and economic and urban development and housing. For her, these are unparalleled places to exchange ideas and learn about how her city is organized. Maeva particularly appreciates hearing the citizen speakers who present their briefs, confirming her belief that it is possible to concretely participate in change as an involved citizen.
Speaking of change, the former journalist wishes that people would stop seeing the Plateau as a completely gentrified borough. Maeva insists that the population is not homogeneous, only made up of rich or well-to-do people. She believes that we can improve the living environment, green the neighborhood and fight against climate change while implementing inclusive policies to keep the neighborhood mixed. She is proud of the work that has been done in this regard, including a new mixed use bylaw, which will increase the amount of social and affordable housing in Montreal.
For Maeva, a sustainable solution to the space problems on the Plateau (for housing, childcare centers or community groups) includes the rehabilitation of the Hôtel-Dieu and Institut des Sourdes-Muettes sites. Projects of this scope and complexity - both of which are in Jeanne-Mance - require long term collaborative work involving many partners in the community. Maeva hopes to still be in office on the day of their inauguration.
Since its first election, Projet Montréal has been gradually transforming the Plateau-Mont-Royal into a green neighborhood, one which is increasingly unified and human-scaled. With renewed energy, the local team continues to focus on improving the quality of life of residents, thanks to micro-interventions throughout the borough, and by completing large-scale projects. It’s a comprehensive urban vision, which will enhance the collective social, cultural, heritage and ecological richness of the Plateau. Energies will be focused on seven main priorities:
-Access to affordable housing
-Protection of our assets
-Quality of our neighbourhoods
-Culture, leisure and social development
-Economic and commercial vitality
-Efficient, transparent and democratic administration