Alliance of developers, architects, builders and planners unveil vision for Montreal redevelopment
By Adam FreillCommercial Construction Infrastructure Residential
Project calls for the reurbanization of one of Montreal’s most visible and attractive areas, the Bridge-Bonaventure and Pointe-du-Moulins sector.
In a collaborative action, developers, architects, builders and planners have joined forces to map out an inclusive and environmentally responsible vision to address the needs of the Bridge-Bonaventure and Pointe-du-Moulins areas of Montreal.
The vision is to create comprehensive, human-scale living environments defined by a balance of housing needs and job creation. The area will also encompass community spaces and facilities, local retail and service offerings, along with a light-rail station.
This project, which calls for the reurbanization of one of Montreal’s most visible and attractive areas, will require investments in the billions of dollars. Its stated goal is to tackle the housing shortage, combat climate change by deterring urban sprawl, and make it possible for many Montrealers and families to stay in, or return to, the city to live.
In unveiling their vision for the project, the members of the alliance, which includes Broccolini, Provencher Roy, Fahey & Associates, Lemay, ACDF Architecture, Neuf Architects, Cycle Capital, Groupe Devimco, Groupe Mach and COPRIM, are engaging in a consultative process that involves community and business groups, as well as citizens, to further the discussions initiated by the city on how best to develop this key area at the gateway to Montreal’s downtown.
The 2.3 square-kilometre Bridge-Bonaventure and Pointe-du-Moulin sector straddles the Sud-Ouest and Ville-Marie boroughs, is near Old Montreal, and lies along the St. Lawrence River. The southern gateway to downtown via the Bonaventure Expressway and the Victoria Bridge, among others, it comprises the subsectors of Pointe-du-Moulin, Cite du Havre, the Peel and Wellington basins, and the Pointe Saint-Charles Triangle.
The members of the group say that, in the context of the housing crisis, urban sprawl and the climate emergency, opportunities for densification in the city centre like this are all too rare and must be seized.
“We want to contribute to thinking and constructive dialogue for the future of this one-of-a-kind sector,” explained Brian Fahey, president of Fahey & Associates, one of the group’s spokespersons. “We hope that the proposed development scenario will help the City of Montreal and all stakeholders to building on what has been learned in the COVID era and continue the work of urban revitalization that is so necessary in a sector like this, which forms a gateway to downtown.”
“The proposed vision will have a positive impact on densification by creating more space for parks and waterfront paths, as well as community and cultural amenities. Prioritizing the design of more generous green spaces is a practical approach to improving the community’s quality of life,” said Louis Lemay, president of design and architecture firm Lemay. “The Bridge-Bonaventure sector and Pointe-du-Moulin offer an excellent opportunity to propose a mixed residential offer that meets the needs of all.”
The consultative mechanism initiated by the architects, planners and developers is meant to be a participatory process to fuel discussion ahead of the public consultation on the master plan for the sector that will be held by the Office de consultation publique de Montreal (OCPM) early this fall. After the OCPM’s report is submitted, the City of Montreal will adopt the appropriate planning mechanisms (Special Planning Program, known by its French abbreviation PPU) or other tools needed to implement its vision for the sector.
To that end, an open-house event was held recently to introduce the vision, and one-on-one meetings with stakeholders are planned over the coming weeks.
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