As part of its commitment to the ecological transition, Montréal is funding projects that help to reduce greenhouse gas emission. The subsidy program for projects related to land development, mobility and sustainable practice is a core part of this commitment.
Launched in 2021, the program is now in its second application period. This year, companies interested in qualifying for a subsidy can submit their project between May 30 and September 30.
$8 million for companies
The program has an $8 million budget that will be divided between different application periods. For the first year only, $4 million will be available to help businesses. The subsidy corresponds to 50 per cent of the cost of the project, up to $1 million, and 50 per cent of professional fees, up to $125,000 or 12.5 per cent of the cost of the project.
The subsidy rate is also increased to 60 per cent when the project involves a social economy business or small business (10 employees or fewer), or when most goods and services rendered come from a social economy business or small business.
A flexible program for maximum innovation
There are many advantages for companies to begin a land development, mobility or sustainable practice project. “There may be an economic gain if, for example, the project reduces water or energy consumption. Projects can also create a sense of belonging for employees and help us to retain labour,” said Dos Santos. She believes that noteworthy achievements that offer innovative solutions can become great communication tools for companies.
To submit a project, a company must be located in a city-designated area. The initiative must also respond to at least one of the program’s environmental objectives, such as promoting sustainable transportation of merchandise, improving waste management or reducing heat islands.
Two project categories
Projects can be of many different types, as the two categories of the program cover a broad spectrum.
- For the “Construction or renovation of a building or a lot,” adding a green wall (plant wall), constructing a green roof or a white roof, and creating bike paths are examples of eligible projects.
- In the “Installation or modification of equipment located in a building” category, projects can propose to install electrical vehicle charging points or bicycle racks, modify the lighting system or replace faucets with water-saving models.
Projects are not limited to these examples, said Dos Santos. “We created the program to give companies flexibility and meet their special needs. We wanted to leave room for innovation and creativity. With the tools and budget we have to offer, we think there are going to be some fantastic projects.”
Open door to small projects
The program can also support more modest projects, as long as they have significant environmental benefits.
An evaluation grid is used to grade projects according to their alignment with program objectives. Subsidies are then awarded to the projects with the most points.
“This subsidy program has some other special features,” explained De Santos. “For example, we allow several companies to join forces to present a shared project. They can also designate representatives, such as professionals or non-profit organizations, to manage their project.”
All fund recipients must attend free meetings with design professionals hired by Montréal, who can help them take their project to the next level. The objective is for companies to be able to deliver high quality projects at the lowest cost.