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November 2020

Elliot Lifson appointed to the Order of Canada

Seven years ago Côte Saint-Luc got lucky when a most distinguished citizen, Elliot Lifson, moved to our community from Hampstead. In fact he became my constituent in District 2.

Today it was announced that Elliot has been appointed to the Order of Canada by the Governor General for his leadership and mentorship in the apparel industry,  his commitment to Canada’s economic growth, and for his community involvement.

Elliot Lifson sports his new Order of Canada pin.


Next to his name on the press release, it says Côte Saint-Luc instead of Montreal. “That was done on purpose,” said Elliot. “I am so proud and happy to be living in Côte Saint-Luc that I wanted that included.”

Elliot found out the good news a month ago. “It was difficult to keep this quiet,” he said. “I was so emotional when I got the call. They asked me if I accepted. I laughed that they had to be kidding. Who turns down an offer like this? I still do not know who nominated me.”

A ceremony at Rideau Hall is expected to be held next May or June. Elliot hopes that the COVID-19 pandemic is under better control by then so he can travel to Ottawa.

The vice-president of Peerless Clothing, Elliot recently became the  president of the Board of Directors  of the Segal Centre. In addition to these duties, he is a respected member of the Montreal community, a dedicated philanthropist, and is actively involved with many organizations and boards, including Member of the Board of Directors of Export Development Canada (EDC); Professor and Board Member at the Desautels Faculty of Management at McGill University; Member of the Faculty Advisory Board, McGill-HEC EMBA Program; Member of the Board of MR- Montréal Relève pour la Persévérance scolaire; Past Chairman, currently sitting as advisor to the Board, Chambre de Commerce de Montreal; President of the Canadian Apparel Federation (CAF); and sits on the Board of many charitable institutions such as The Montreal Heart Institute Foundation, and The Jewish General Hospital Foundation, and past Co-Chair of Centraide. Mr. Lifson received his MBA from the Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario. He is also a Graduate in Law from the Université de Montreal and a Member of the Québec Bar. Elliot Lifson has been a member of the Segal Centre for Performing Arts’ board for the last 12 years.

Elliot is also the recipient of many awards including the ‘Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal’, the ‘Desautels Faculty of Management Distinguished Teaching Award’ (Graduate Level), Quebec’s Fashion Industry’s ‘Recognition Award’, McGill University Alumni Association ‘Honorary Life Membership Award’, and the Senate of Canada 150th  Commemorative Medal.

Bravo Elliot!

Is train noise bothering you? We need to hear your voice loud and clear

At my most recent District 2 Advisory Committee meeting, held via Zoom, train noise was on the agenda.

Councillor Dida Berku is teaming up with me for a District 2 and 3 Coalition to try and deal with excessive train noise from the CP Railway. Frank Palucci said he even hears the trains all the way on Ilan Ramon Crescent.  There was an incident recently in which a piece of equipment broke down, causing a few sleepless nights for residents of Merrimac and Baily Road residents.


Merrimac resident Charles Guerin is leading an effort to gather complaints. Below are his instructions:

What we need from people are for them first to email a complaint to CP Rail “Community Connect ( ,” it’s sort of a help desk for CP Rail. The email should CC: on all correspondence, Cote St Luc’s legal counsel.

Community Connect will send everyone back a form letter the next day that explains why CP is good and their complaint is a waste of time…everyone should ignore that. The email complaint should address these points:

  1. What type of noise is bothering them? — Idling, braking, shunting (loud crashing sounds), bells, horns or something else?
  1. When does it happen when it bothers them? — Daytime, Nighttime
  1. Where are they located (address is fine)? How far is this approximately from the train?
  1. Have they experienced any of the following?

            - Woken up in the middle of the night?

            - House shaking?

            - Frightened by sudden loud noise or crash?

            - Other

  1. What effect is it having on them?

            - Loss of sleep

            - Anxiety

            - Depression

            - Fear

  1. Do any specific incidents that come to mind, particularly where they remember a date and time?
  1. What would they like to see happen?

            [ ] Noise barriers added

            [ ] Fewer trains at night

            [ ] Fewer trains at all times

            [ ] Ban on bells and horns at night

            [ ] Repair of old equipment such as manual switches

            [ ] Stop leaving the trains idling

            [ ] Slow the speed of the trains

            [ ] Increase the speed of the trains


"I am located at 5685 Ch Merrimac, the idling noise at night is shaking our house and waked me up every night, sometimes several times a night. My child wakes up too when loud crashes occur despite our sound-proofing windows. I am losing sleep every night.

Last week you left a train idling for close to 48 hours, this is unacceptable!

I am asking CP to add a noise barrier in my area, reduce the number of trains at night and replace the antiquated equipment so that trains can roll past faster without the need for idling."

I would like to thank Charles for his efforts and urge those who are impacted by this noise to please take the appropriate action.


Paved road completed at revitalized Isadore Goldberg Park

When I was first elected 15 years ago, I pledged to one day make Isadore Goldberg Park more accessible.

For reasons I never understood, the park was built between a number of apartment buildings on Sir Walter Scott and Kildare Road. The actual sign was at the corner of Kildare and Merrimac, but with no clear direction of how to even get there. It was essentially a park for the residents of these buildings and while it was well utilized, this could have been the case for such a wider audience.


The park sign is now installed where it should be.


Our original plan was to relocate the park to the large patch of green space on Marc Chagall Avenue across from the Marquise  and next to Les Cours Chagall. However, that was derailed when we desperately needed that spot for construction workers at the Equinoxe to park in order to ensure residents could find places on the street.

Well, over the years Director of Public Works Beatrice Newman and I maintained a regular dialogue on this topic. Last year she came up with the brilliant idea to revitalize the existing park and at the same time make it widely accessible. You can read what was done here.

What a beautiful new pathway.


The park itself was cleaned up, new equipment, sand and  trash cans installed and most importantly the dead bushes and trees removed . A gravel pathway was made and this past week it was paved. What a beautiful site! And yes, the sign has been relocated to the entrance to the pathway.

Isadore Goldberg Park is truly now accessible to all.

Less than a year ago former Councillor Goldberg passed away. I know that his brother, sister in law and niece, each of whom reside in my district, will be pleased to represent him when we do a re-dedication in 2021.

The temporary lot is no more.

Oh yes, please allow me to add another piece of good news. The Equinoxe workers no longer need the lot and it is on its way to be returning to green space.


Rembrandt Park basketball courts to be refurbished next spring

On one of my regular District 2 walks recently David, one of my constituents, and some youngsters asked me when the Rembrandt Park basketball courts would be fixed up.

As part of our Capital Works Program, I was promised that this was in the plans for 2021. However, given the financial impact of the pandemic I could not be sure.

The kids were excited to be playing basketball in November.

After speaking with project manager Dalia Mohamed I can now confirm the work will be done. The city will call for tenders in March and the renovations will occur towards the end of May.

David will be excited to see refurbished courts.

First and foremost, there will be new asphalt installed. That is very important given the surface is in pretty poor condition. They will also paint new lines, install new benches and new lighting to allow for evening activity. The city will replace the existing headboards and  nets with new backboards of rectangular shape with the double rim. For the basketball poles they will be sanded and painted with two coats.

The nets will be replaced.

Last week  I spoke to Alex Fyon of J-Hoops, which runs basketball programs year-round and there could be a possible partnership in the works.

Meanwhile, the tennis season at Rembrandt was extended due to the unseasonably warm weather. For tennis court # 1, the city awarded a contract to install a 15-feet barrier to allow the Public Works trucks to enter the court

New Physiotherapy clinic opens in CSL; young owner has interesting back story

Hampstead native Greg Stern's passion for movement and helping others along their own health journey developed from his own physical struggles. In 2013, he sustained an ankle injury that would forever change his life. What appeared to be a routine ankle sprain, developed into a chronic problem in his foot that caused him constant pain for three years. "I consulted and worked with many different rehab professionals to no avail and eventually underwent surgery," he says. "Unfortunately, this was only the beginning of my journey, as compensatory patterns triggered hip and back pain that had not been there prior to the operation."


Greg had reached a low point and was struggling for answers. It was at this point that he knew he needed to dive deeper in order to understand his body if he  was ever going to escape the pain he was experiencing. 


While his professional education includes a Bachelor of Science in Physiology and Kinesiology, and Masters in Physical Therapy at McGill University, Greg's curiosity has always extended far beyond the classroom. He has spent thousands of hours learning from books, coaches online, attending courses and trying to gather as many perspectives on different therapeutic approaches, researching and experimenting which methods work and which don’t.

"I began to incorporate a comprehensive approach that looked at the root causes behind my pain and considered the environmental factors—shoes and chairs to name a few—that were continuing to contribute to my poor movement behaviour," Greg says. "Over time, I diligently and methodically applied the concepts that I learned to slowly restructure my body. Thankfully, I am now able to experience life pain-free, play the sports I love unimpeded by fear and go for long hikes barefoot after not being able to stand for more than few seconds without pain."


Greg Stern
Greg Stern



Last June Greg opened From The Ground Up Physio at  5555 Westminster (Suite 108) in Côte Saint-Luc. He calls himself the CFO (Chief Foot Officer).


"With From the Ground Up, my aim is to help guide people through their own path of self-discovery on their health journeys and guide people to not only be pain-free, but to thrive in their everyday lives," Greg says. "Injuries are not only a process of recovery, but discovery; an opportunity to learn, be curious, to better understand your body, to correct issues and improve efficiency and performance."


For more details go to, email or call 514-369-0909.




Fall work on Isadore Goldberg Park beautification completed

A huge thank you to Director of Public Works Beatrice Newman and her team for the outstanding job they did transforming Isadore Goldberg Park this past year.

For years the sign was on Kildare Road, near Marc Chagall, but all you could see were apartment buildings. You almost needed a map to find the park.



We now have a nice sign on Marc Chagall across from the Marquise. New lights have been installed  in the park and along the new pathway to the park, as well as  new benches, tables, play equipment and additional sand.  And this piece of great news: the pathway is expected to be paved by the end of the month, weather permitting.

Next year we will be installing a gate as we have in Trudeau Park. Only pedestrians will be able to enter through there. Vehicles will not do so unless the employee has the key.  Until the final installation, we will place cement bells at the entrance so the Equinoxe team can no longer drive over our property to get to their dump. Last year all the dead trees and shrubs were removed.



"We are so excited and proud to have prepared this little out of the way park for your residents," Ms Newman shared with me. "It was a collaborative effort from every single division of Public Works. The foremen, their employees and John Monteiro  and I worked closely to realize this initiative. And now we have saved the expense of a new park on Marc Chagall, which is no longer necessary. We hope that the community from Marc Chagall, Kildare and Sir Walter Scott will enjoy many years in this park during the four seasons of the year."



The  pathway will be cleared of snow starting this year. "We accomplished what we set out to do, but the only thing that didn’t work out is that Mr. Goldberg couldn’t wait for the new inauguration," Ms. Newman added. "I think he would have been very happy."

Isadore passed away last winter.

Cineplex Odeon theatres at Cavendish close for good

The COVID-19 has claimed another victim as the Cineplex Odeon Theatres at the Quartier Cavendish have closed for good

I was surprised to see the theatres last this long. They never did a booming business, but it is nonetheless a loss for our community. Seniors in particular appreciated having a multiplex so close by. It was also great for young families. In recent years our city has held our Volunteer Appreciation Evening there.


The doors are closing.


When they first opened here about two decades ago it was a celebration. Prior to that the closest theatres were at Decarie Square (now a Dollar Cinema) and Plaza Côte des Neiges (now Cinéstarz).

The movie theatre business has taken a massive beating since COVID-19 hit last March. They did reopen for a few months, but crowds were weak.  Would Cinéstarz owner Bruce Gurberg consider stepping in and saving the Cavendish theatres or has the curtain closed for good?

I will miss this place.


A sign at the Quartier Cavendish does inform everyone that the theatres are closed permanently and to head to the Forum downtown. Cineplex Odeon also operates a cinema in  LaSalle.

The last movie I saw was at Cavendish - Academy Award winner Parasite.