Laval is determined to turn its ugly duckling into a swan. It will raze condemned low-income houses in Val Martin and intends to turn that section of Chomedey into an attractive place to live for people of all incomes.

“The bulldozers will go to work south of Notre Dame within the next two weeks to build the first 124 of 357 planned new social housing units,” Mayor Marc Demers told The Suburban.

“When we were elected [in 2013], we discovered that more than 50% of those houses had been abandoned,” the mayor said in an an interview. “Mold had permeated the walls, which made them unfit for human habitation, since the air inside could make people sick.”

City crews will start clearing the area as part of a major, $30 million investment to spruce up the district, change streets and add green space, before home construction commences at the beginning of 2018.