Residents of Brébeuf celebrated the 105th anniversary of the Prud Bridge man in November 2023.
This delay exasperates the one who introduces herself as the neighbor and guardian of the bridge, Réjeanne Prud'homme. The bridge is named after her grandfather, and it was she who set up the SOS Pont Prud'homme Committee.
When we look in the archives of covered bridges in Quebec, there are bridges that have been swept away by ice jams that occur. Here, as recently as last spring, there was an ice jam of branches and trees that clung to the bridge, she says.
The municipal councilor of Brébeuf, Marie-Josée Lebel, is also worried. We see underneath [the bridge], there are small pieces that have burst because trees passed underneath. He is fragile. One hundred and five years, yes, but 105 years in wood, in Quebec, it's exceptional that it's there, but we have to move quickly.
The member for the Labelle constituency, CAQ member Chantale Jeannotte, does not understand what justifies such long delays. The ministry tells us that this is a priority, and although it proves it. Because after four years [of closing the bridge], honestly, I have a hard time believing that this is a priority. But we will fight this fight to the end and I am behind the community 100%.
That's too much bureaucracy there! Let's see, there is someone who is not doing his job at the ministry. It can't be.
A quote from Chantale Jeannotte, MP for Labelle
The Prud'homme covered bridge, in the municipality of Brébeuf, during a strong flood of the Diable River.
In a response sent by email, the Direction générale des Laurentides–Lanaudière of the MTQ underlines that the bridge was closed preventively in 2019 due to the flooding of the Diable River which caused instability damage to the foundation units . He recognizes that the work carried out quickly in 2022 was a stopgap solution for stabilizing the bridge and preventing it from moving during a future spring flood.
Regarding the restoration work, the ministry writes that certain aspects of legal scope, as well as the environmental aspect, had an impact on the schedule. Therefore, it is still too early to specify the schedule as well as the costs of the project.
Since the bridge will likely be elevated and is located on agricultural land, neighbors wondered whether authorization from the Commission for the Protection of Agricultural Land was required to widen the right-of-way. However, the CPTAQ affirms that no request to this effect was made. The neighbors have not received a request from the MTQ to buy a few meters of land from them to widen the right of way of the bridge.
The Grand Mont-Tremblant Chamber of Commerce also denounces the situation. The vice-president of the Chamber, Pascal de Bellefeuille, would like to recall the importance of the Prud'homme bridge in the region's tourist offering.
Tourists take photos in front of the Prud'homme bridge in August 2019.
There is great economic value for all neighboring communities and therefore, it is a bridge to protect, restore and rehabilitate value in the regional destination, here in the MRC des Laurentides. Moreover, it is listed on the Route des Belles Histoires des Pays-D'en Haut.
The bridge, underlines Pascal de Bellefeuille, features in the lists of things to see in the Laurentians. Canoe and paddleboard descents on the Diable River end there, a dock offers a launching place for kayakers, picnic tables are installed there, the circuit The Trans-Québec snowmobile route passes there and important cycling routes used it.
- René Saint-Louis (View profile)René Saint-LouisFollow