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  orchestra
_city re-emerging
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Cohlmeyer Architecture was one of five finalists selected to compete in the second stage of the international competition for a cultural complex in Montréal, Quebec. 112 architects from 20 Countries around the world submitted entries for the first stage of the competition.

The project contains three entities:

  • Montréal Symphony Orchestra Hall
  • Drama & Music Conservatory
  • Provincial Offices & Headquarters  for Quebec’s Premier

The building contains a large concert hall for 2100 people, two smaller theatres for music and drama, a multimedia studio, two recital halls and 500,000 square feet of office space. The theatres are situated within an overall building mass while maintaining a strong street presence and identity.

Cohlmeyer Architecture’s approach was to unify the three distinct programs into a single form. A narrow building mass spirals around the site’s perimeter from metro level to the roof-top offices for the Premier. The building is elevated high above ground and it encircles an open courtyard – a cloister-like setting that is accessible to the surrounding urban context. The building ‘touches’ the ground only at the points of entry to the three entities. The integration of building programs fosters interaction between different activities in the complex, creating a rich urban environment both inside and out.

Comments by the jury:

  • a project inspired by democratic ideals, reaching out to the people through its cultural and symbolic scope;
  • an enchanting, poetic design;
  • a design that is innovative, bold, spectacular, and dynamic in its organization;
  • a proposal full of high-quality micro-architectural events;
  • an initiative that redefines possibilities for large-scale multifunctional urban projects;
  • a flexible volumetry offering good potential for adaptation and change;
  • dynamic interaction with underground Montréal made possible by direct access to the Metro.