Design of the outdoor spaces surrounding and adjacent to the B7 site.
Bâtiment 7 is an urban rehabilitation project based in and around a series of buildings based in a brownfield formerly owned by the Canadian National Railway Company in Montreal’s Pointe St Charles neighbourhood.
It aims to positively impact its neighbourhood through the creation of a mixed-used programming model flexible enough to change over time and slated to include at launch: a daycare centre, a micro-brewery and artist studios.
The site is located at the southern-most edge of the Pointe St Charles neighbourhood, a traditionally poor and culturally diverse area of Montreal currently experiencing significant gentrification.
It is important to note that the site itself was granted for development as a result of significant citizen mobilizing in Pointe St Charles.
This design challenge will consider the outdoor spaces of the Bâtiment 7, adjacent to, and surrounding, the buildings themselves.
The aim of the challenge will be to consider the potential location of the outdoor spaces and to produce a visual draft of a potential site layout.
Within the social context and neighbourhood, that surrounds them, how could the outdoor spaces of the site be managed in order to be accessible to the area’s population? To what extent can the Bâtiment 7 physical site become a mitigation agent in the neighbourhood?
Site management strategy for mixed-use housing project
Brique par Brique is a community housing project currently being planned in the Parc-Extension neighbourhood, a low-income, multicultural neighbourhood that is increasingly being faced with gentrification as a result of the development of a nearby Université de Montréal site.
It is envisioned as a mixed-use project, allowing for both stable, affordable housing and subsidized social and service initiatives for Brique par Brique and area residents (art studio, childcare facilities, etc.).
The project will be funded through a community credit funding model and rental revenues offered at the market cost to sustain the existence of the project’s social initiatives.
Based on the existing body of work available on alternative social housing funding model, Brique par Brique needs to now come up with an accurate and demonstrable representation of their funding and site management strategy.
The goal with this challenge would be to envision how a multi-storey site could:
Communicate effectively how investor funds are used and nurture community development all the while creating wealth and generating interest.
How space could be managed within the building for use by cultural initiatives for the benefit of project and area residents.
The challenge should include the: visual elements (infographics, animation) that will represent the site itself and varying sizes of units allocated for either use and how the project can be attractive to individuals who may be interested in investing.
Civitasx is a joint initiative of St. George’s Anglican Church and PEACE Initiatives Canada, a Muslim non-profit. Civitasx is Latin for “community with a common purpose” and reflects a shared faith-based commitment to dialogue and community service. This collaboration has so far led to regular food outreach events.
St. George’s Anglican Church, a national historic site, includes an annex that, among other things, is currently being used to offer services to Montreal’s homeless population.
This site is underutilized. It is essential to the survival of the Church community that they develop a project that will help raise approximately 8 million dollars. They also hope to do this while increasing their capacity to meet their social mandate.
Civitasx would like to explore the possibility of converting this site into a sustainable community-focused project that would include worship space for three or four other faith communities – including Indigenous faith and spirituality – and a common space designed specifically to support interfaith project work and shared learning.
This design challenge will consider the extent to which the Church annex could be adapted, either in its current form or through expansions, to serve an interfaith dialog and service mandate.
Challenge outcomes should include a preliminary vision of the site demonstrating how it could potentially allow for worship and programming areas for the site’s various faith-based partners and joint areas allocated towards shared programming and service.
Community partner: Montreal Urban Aboriginal Health Centre (MUAHC)
Centre site overview
The MUAHC is part of the Montreal Urban Aboriginal Strategy Network (NETWORK) that was created in 2008 to improve the quality of life of the Aboriginal people in the greater Montreal area through a coordinated and concerted approach.
The vision of the MUAHC is to develop a holistic health centre catering to the needs and services of the Aboriginal population in the greater Montreal area. Project leads are currently in talks with the City of Montreal in order to advocate that a city-owned building be allocated and developed for this project.
This design challenge will lead to a representation of how a possible site could be envisioned as a health centre.
This challenge will need to consider in which neighborhood the building should be located and the optimal size of that it would require.
The challenge output will be a document that effectively represents the need and vision of the space. In designing a draft approach, design participants will need to take into consideration site accessibility, cultural sensibility to targeted Indigenous populations, and allocation of services in internal space in either public open areas and private spaces.
The NDG Food Depot is an organization offering a comprehensive array of food security services under one roof that includes: emergency food baskets and meals, educational services and a network of collective gardens and is the only organization in NDG dedicated solely to food security.
NDG is a large neighbourhood in the west of Montreal and home to three food deserts that are geographically quite far from each other.
The depot is currently looking for a new home, but regardless of where it settles, given the size of the neighborhood, it will inevitably be far from at least two of its target populations.
This design challenge will consider the ways in which the depot could maximize current outreach strategies in order to strategically position itself and its programs.
The depot relies on an integrated model of multiple services in one location, so the focus will be on both, encouraging access to the depot space, and finding innovative ways to incorporate this comprehensive model in its off-site activities.
Challenge outputs could consider the potential creation of temporary or permanent infrastructure, the use of networked collaborations with other actors and the implementation of outward-facing messaging mechanisms appropriate for the organization.
Since 1927, the Tyndale St-Georges Community Centre has offered a variety of health and social services to the community of Little Burgundy and the Montreal South-West.
Its diverse array of programs are based out of a four-story historic brownstone neighborhood building. In November 2016, the centre announced the acquisition of the local branch of the Montreal Children’s Library.
This library features a diverse collection of 6,000 children’s book, 75% of which are in English. The library is used primarily by participants in Tyndale St-Georges programs, local neighborhood kids and residents of Little Burgundy and the South-West.
The community centre’s programs that primarily use the library are the early childhood program and the Children, Youth and Families Department in the context of its after-school program. The library engages a librarian and a team of 10 volunteers.
Through this design challenge, Tyndale St-Georges would like to optimize the library’s relevance and connection to area residents through an expansion of current mandate that would allow it to reach kids in early childhood and their parents. This is retained as a priority given the demonstrated impact of early childhood literacy on poverty alleviation.
1. An optimization and expansion of its physical site and program offerings. This could take the form of changes to the physical layout, an expansion of the library into a nearby space and integration of new technologically-orientated services (makerspace).
2. The development of an outreach component to the library through a mobile unit (library bus) or pop-up library stands to be used throughout the community with the objective of connecting to currently unreached communities – particularly among Little Burgundy’s recent immigrant populations.