Mount Royal, A Territory to Discover

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Université de Montréal

The Université de Montréal opened its doors in 1878. At the time it had three faculties—theology, law and medicine—and its campus was situated in the Latin Quarter, on the corner of Saint-Denis and Sainte-Catherine streets. It was only in 1943 that it moved to where it has been located ever since, on the north side of Mount Royal.

After a fire destroyed the buildings on the Saint-Denis site in 1919, the university needed to find a new location. The mountain, considered a prestigious address, was chosen for the new campus. In 1925, the university’s directors commissioned architect Ernest Cormier to draw up the plans. The architect deviated from the North American concept of a fragmented campus spread out over a green space, in favour of a “compact plan.”

The construction stretched from 1928 until 1943. It would result in a monumental building, considered as one of the first buildings of the modern style in Canada.

Sources: Le patrimoine de Montréal Quartier Mont-Royal, Collection Pignon sur rue, N 7, Côte-des-Neiges.
Étude de caractérisation de L’Arrondissement historique et naturel du Mont-Royal, Commission des biens culturels du Québec, 2005.
Université de Montréal,


Université de Montréal, 2008
Les amis de la montagne Collection


Questions :

(1) Originally, the Roger Gaudry pavilion’s dome was supposed to house a telescope.

Answer True

(2) The Roger-Gaudry pavilion’s tower is 52 meters tall.

Answer False


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Université de Montréal, a lighthouse on the mountain

Like a lighthouse.
Erected on the north slope of Mount Royal, the Université de Montréal tower is a vibrant symbol of learning in Québec.

A unique structure, the crowning achievement of architect Ernest Cormier, its silhouette against the Montréal skyline affirms the presence of the largest French-language university in the Americas.

The campus of the University, designed in the purest tradition of North American campuses, spreads out over sixty-five hectares, two thirds of which are green spaces.

Rising from its centre is the Roger-Gaudry pavilion
ten kilometres of hallways
fourteen elevators and seven main staircases
almost five million yellow bricks.
two thousand four hundred and ninety six doors, including one that opens into the magnificent hall of honour.

Push open the doors, enter and look around you
You can see
majestic volumes
refined surfaces,
straight lines,
The pavilion is incomplete without its tower. Fifty two metres tall with twenty one floors. Six of them are reserved for the University’s archives and collections.
A dome. Originally, it was supposed to house a telescope. Today it holds telecommunications systems.

The first modern institution to be built in Québec, the Roger-Gaudry pavilion is considered an art déco masterpiece.

The tower and lateral wings of this unique building are represented by the letters U and M in the Université de Montréal’s stylized logo.