Mayor of Montreal asks Quebec government to present reopening plan to aid in grand event planning

Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante is calling on the Quebec government to present its reopening plan so organizers of concerts, festivals, conventions and other events can start planning.

She said that without some clarity from the Legault government, events will soon be canceled again with potentially devastating effects on Montreal’s economy.

“There has to be a plan,” she said at a news conference on Sunday. “What is the plan for the (health) measures for spring and summer? People are booking… flights right now. ”

Plante, Glenn Castanheira of the Montreal-Ville Center and Yves Lalumiere of Tourisme Montreal said they support the public health measures, but are concerned about events helping to boost Montreal’s economy.

“We are going to lose the great conferences that we have worked with for many years, some of which are international in nature. We can’t just accept weekly information about the future anymore,” Lalumiere said.

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READ MORE: Long road to recovery for Quebec’s cultural sector after COVID-19 shutdown

On January 20, Ontario announced full-capacity events would be allowed as of March 14. Planners in Montreal took no such indication, leaving hundreds of events and rows behind. thousands of potential tourists rotate with the wind.

Lalumiere and Castanheira say Montreal is on the verge of losing millions of dollars to other cities.

“I wouldn’t say they’re eating our lunch, but very quickly that’s going to happen,” Lalumiere said.

If we lose them this summer, it will not only lose millions of dollars immediately but millions of dollars in the long term,” said Castanheira, evoking the difficulty of arranging events to back to Montreal.

Last year, most North American cities canceled events, but this year Montreal is an exception.

“The difference this time is that we were the first to close and we are now the last to reopen,” said Castanheira.

Evenko’s head of reservations was delighted to hear that the mayor was backing the events business. He says international artists are slowly losing patience, choosing to replace their Montreal tour dates with American cities.

READ MORE: Omicron, new COVID restrictions mean tough times ahead for Montreal nightlife venues

“We tried to postpone some of the content we booked for January, February, and December, but we lost a lot of shows right away because the artists were fed up with the rescheduling. ,” Farkas told Global News.

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For example, Elton John’s farewell tour at the Bell Center has just been postponed for the fourth time. He said more than 100 performances have been postponed or canceled since December 18.

“We did a bunch of shows from October to early December and to my knowledge there haven’t been any outbreaks of that,” he said, adding that the show’s promoters actually enforce the rules of face coverings and vaccine passports.

In Quebec, concerts and other events with half the number of people are allowed on Mondays, with up to 500 attendees. But he says those rules make most shows not worth adopting.

Events like Osheaga and the Jazz Festival are only a few months away, and he doesn’t know if they’ll ever be allowed.

“We have five festivals coming up this summer that we need to plan and we need to hire,” he said. “When Broadway opened on July 1 and we weren’t open yet, you know, eight months later, it was incredible.”

Quebec’s ministries of health and culture did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc. Mayor of Montreal asks Quebec government to present reopening plan to aid in grand event planning

Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a Interreviewed U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined Interreviewed in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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