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COVID-19: Montréal will support its business owners as economic activities resume

21 mai 2020

Montréal, le 21 mai 2020 - With businesses reopening on Monday, we enter an important phase of our metropolis' economic recovery. In order to ensure as successful resumption of economic activities, as well as the safety of Montréal's population in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the city will roll out a series of measures to support business owners and provide for a successful economic recovery.

“Montréal's business owners have been hit hard by the pandemic. Reopening businesses is a long-awaited breath of fresh air. The city was present and supportive of its businesses since the very beginning of the health crisis, and it will continue to support them as economic activities resume. We want to make sure that business owners are ready to welcome their clientele safely and in keeping with public health directives, so that they may successfully reopen without hindering efforts to contain the spread of the virus,” said Mayor Valérie Plante.

Partnership and financial contribution for architecture
In an effort to support business owners as they reopen their businesses, the city has concluded a partnership with Architecture sans frontière Québec. A financial contribution of $150,000 from the city will enable the organization to provide advice and technical support to more than one hundred independent businesses to reconfigure their premises in compliance with public health directives. The organization will also issue a configuration guide for open consultation, to be published in June.

As a UNESCO city of design, Montréal is proud to contribute the talent of its architects and designers. Our metropolis is firmly determined to showcase its creative community, namely its architects and designers, as Montréal reinvents itself. This was, in fact, one of its main commitments to the community.

Communications package
In addition to the efforts invested by commercial development organizations (Sociétés de développement commercial) and other entities acting in support of business owners, the city has developed a communications package to provide guidelines for safe travels on public property and along safety corridors, safe active transportations lanes, and construction sites, in compliance with public safety requirements.

It is a highly effective communications system, including signage, furniture and support. Graphic elements developed by the city are uniform across the entire territory of Montréal, enabling users to identify them easily from one borough to the next. The system remains unchanged in all contexts, whether the pedestrian is crossing a street undergoing construction work, a safety corridor, a pedestrian, slow-traffic or shared street, or a safe active transportation lane along an arterial road.  

SDC Initiatives
Finally, in order to resume Montrealers' consumer experience and to facilitate the adaptation of business owners to the health context, the Sociétés de développement commercial have taken significant initiatives that reflect great reactivity.

Whether in the form of microsites for business owners containing all the information pertaining to health standards and available financial support, the implementation of a cargo-bike urban delivery service, local business promotion campaigns, the mutualisation of resources or gathering the expertise of design firms in order to adapt the indoor and outdoor customer experience, these projects reflect their involvement in and contribution to the city's economic recovery.

“Reopening businesses is a major step, but this is certainly not the time to let down our guard. In order to avoid a second wave of COVID-19 contagion, we must continue to follow public health directives. I ask of all Montrealers who enter businesses to do so wearing a face covering. This must become a habit for us. It is a way of protecting others, thus protecting ourselves as well,” concluded Mayor Valérie Plante.

For more information
A web site containing all the information and available tools to reopen businesses safely has been set up.

Business owners who wish to obtain more information regarding the various programs, measures and tools available can contact the city on weekdays, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., at 514-394-1793, or fill out the related form (in French).