Maskoutains landscapes: reveal, enhance, redefine.
The last few decades have been marked by the emergence of so-called zones of agricultural intensification. These areas are facing a dual phenomenon:
- The decreasing number of farmers resulting from the concentration of farms
- The standardization or normalization of the landscape.
In a context where landscape quality increasingly influences residential choice, agricultural activity alone cannot ensure community vitality. It is becoming essential to meet the needs of farmers as well as non-farming residents, new residents and visitors (e.g. cyclo-tourists).
This prompted the elected representatives of MRC des Maskoutains, in collaboration with the Chair in Landscape and Environmental Design, to initiate a project aiming to reveal, enhance or redefine the landscape shaped by intensive agriculture. Conducted by a team of academics, professionals of the MRC, elected representatives and various ministries, the project successively aims to:
- Evaluate landscapes to identify their features and dynamics;
- Disseminate this study - as broadly as possible - to help update landscape issues as perceived by local and regional stakeholders, and local population;
- Develop future scenarios with regards to perceived issues;
- Identify a collectively shared vision, which will eventually support interventions to reveal, enhance or redefine the landscape.
This 3-year study includes activities to harness the involvement and contribution of elected officials and citizens (e.g. photo exhibitions of student projects, landscape Gala). The study also aims to develop methods to characterize different landscape dimensions (biophysical, visual, scalable and socio-cultural) in agricultural intensification zones transferable to other MRCs in the Bas-Saint-Laurent.
The project will result in publications - a book and a DVD- presenting a reproducible procedure for rural MRCs in the early phases of a project destined to reveal, enhance and redefine the landscape.
- Research direction
- Gérald Domon, Associate scientific director, CPEUM
- Julie Ruiz, Professor, UQTR
- François Lestage, MRC des Maskoutains
- Maryse Séguin, MRC des Maskoutains
- Research agent/assistant
- Guy Bédard, ministère des Transports du Québec
- Pascale Bertrand, ministère de l’Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l’Alimentation du Québec
- Stéphane Blanchet, ministère du Développement économique, de l’Innovation et de l’Exportation du Québec
- Luc Brunelle, ministère de la Culture, des Communications et de la Condition féminine du Québec
- Jacinthe Gagnon, Hydro-Québec;
- Martin Joly, ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des Parcs du Québec
- Évelyne Vouligny, ministère de l’Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l’Alimentation du Québec
- Nathalie Ward, CRÉ Montérégie est
- Jean-Pierre Ducruc, ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des Parcs du Québec
- Frédéric Poisson, ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des Parcs du Québec
- Julie Robert, Union des producteurs agricoles
- Bulletin régional juin 2009
- Le courrier 25 juin 2009