The City of Montréal has launched an international contest to design a £17 million public plaza outside McGill College
The free-to-enter multidisciplinary urban design competition seeks proposals for a major new space in the heart of the historic university, which was founded in 1821 following a royal charter granted by King George IV.
The phased project will create a pedestrianised public square spanning four sections of the university’s main avenue between Rue Cathcart to Rue Sherbrooke Ouest in the downtown area of Quebec’s largest city.
In its brief, the city council says it wants to ‘select a spatial design concept for the entirety of Place de l’Avenue McGill College. The concept must meet and even surpass the city’s expectations regarding the challenges posed by the project that is the subject of the competition, and which are described in the competition program.
‘At the end of the competition, the jury will select and recommend a winner and, subject to approval by the relevant municipal authorities, the city will award the winner a contract to provide the professional services required to complete the project.’
McGill College occupies a large campus in the city’s Mount Royal district. McGill College Avenue was laid out in 1857 and widened during the 1980s. The street is home to several large office buildings, a shopping mall and university facilities, and also hosts the city’s annual design festival.
The project is split into two phases with the first covering improvements between Rue Cathcart and Boulevard De Maisonneuve Ouest, and the second covering the area from Boulevard De Maisonneuve Ouest to Rue Sherbrooke Ouest.
The three-stage competition will select a team to transform the prominent avenue into a public space for students and the wider community. Judges will include Lola Sheppard; architect and partner at Lateral Office of Toronto; Olivier Philippe, founding partner of Agence Ter in Paris; and Christiane Rail, project architect at the Ville de Montréal.
Five teams will be invited to proceed to a paid, second design phase following an anonymous and unpaid conceptual first round. One overall winner and two runners-up will later be invited to participate in a third round and respond to questions raised by the jury.
The deadline for applications is 19 December.
How to apply
Visit the competition website for more information
McGill College : l’avenue réinventée
Concours international de design urbain pluridisciplinaire
700, rue De la Gauchetière Ouest, 28e étage
Montréal (Québec) H3B 5M2