Montreal, September 7th 2023
The vast majority of the site having now been secured, the Cemetery's three entrances will be publicly accessible.
Maintenance Services employees have been working tirelessly and section by section, since the strike ended in July, in order to secure the site by cleaning up the grounds and removing weakened tree branches which had fallen to the ground over last winter and during storms, or that were showing signs of probable collapse. The paths have also been cleared of debris, which had accumulated as the months went by.
Areas representing a potential hazard to visitors will be clearly indicated in order to avoid risks leading to falls and/or injuries. Maintenance Operations teams will have marked areas where clean-up work is not entirely completed. That being said, there remains little work to be done on the Cemetery’s grounds, as La Fabrique estimates that only 2% of the site will not yet be available to the public in time for the September 11 reopening.
Update on postponed burial services
Cremation as well as crypt and ground burial services have resumed at Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery, however, the schedule aiming to make up for the time lost will likely extend to December, if not January. La Fabrique is working closely with the bereaved families in order to respect the order of priority of the services that were postponed due to the strike, although some external factors or logistical issues, unrelated to La Fabrique, are sometimes raised by the families and result in changes being brought to the order of priority. The Cemetery’s management team continues to proactively work with the families to facilitate burial arrangements.
La Fabrique invites the public to consult the website and the social media channels of the Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery in order to obtain updates on the progress of burial services.
“We are very close to a complete return to normal in terms of the public’s access to the Cemetery’s grounds, which greatly delights us”, stated Michel St-Amour, volunteer administrator of La Fabrique. “The work remaining to be finalized on the site will be carried out over the next few weeks, and fortunately, this will not prevent the reopening. Regarding the scheduling that we are organizing with the families, they can count on us to ensure that each burial will take place with the greatest respect and within the shortest delays, in accordance with the capacity of our services and the availability of the families concerned. In regards to the reopening on September 11, we are very pleased to be in a position to confirm this date. Our mission will always be to offer a serene and contemplative environment to the population, respecting all the generations that came before us and those that will follow.”
About the Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery
Founded in 1854, the Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery is the largest in Canada. Open to all faiths, it ensures that nearly one million deceased persons rest in respect and dignity, and provides comfort and serenity to their loved ones. It offers a range of goods and services to help bereaved families pay a fitting tribute to their dear ones. Its staff offers compassionate and professional welcome and support. Located in an incomparable natural environment within the Mount Royal heritage site, recognized by its status as a National Historic Site of Canada, the Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery has over 13,500 trees, is a unique place of contemplation in Montréal, and acts as an essential witness to our society’s history.