The Future of Institutional Properties

Les amis de la montagne has a voice in the many discussions concerning the future of large institutional properties on the mountain. We campaign for informed decision-making that supports the sustainability of the built heritage that shapes Mount Royal’s identity.

Preserving the Heritage of Mount Royal

As early as 1675, when Sulpician priests established a mission on the mountain, Mount Royal became a choice location for large institutional complexes. Religious communities, hospitals, schools and universities settled on the mountain over time, subsequently playing a fundamental role in the development of Montréal. These mostly public or community properties helped define Mount Royal and now form an integral part of Montréal’s identity.

Today, many of these establishments are undergoing profound changes, and their sites on the mountain no longer meet initial needs. As a result, the future of several properties forming the ring of institutions around Mount Royal is being redefined and is subject to debate. 

The vacancy of these large complexes raises major questions about the future of the mountain and requires the adoption of exceptional planning measures. How can their repurposing contribute to the integrity of Mount Royal’s natural, cultural and landscape heritage while contributing to the city’s development? This is the challenge at hand.

The current situation offers a rare opportunity to rethink the future of these sites and buildings. Les amis de la montagne advocates the following goals for their repurposing: 
  • Preserving and enhancing the cultural, natural and landscape heritage of sites
  • Improving the architectural, landscape and functional quality of the interfaces between the city and the mountain 
  • Expanding Mount Royal Park by adding adjacent lands when and where appropriate and by exploiting their full greening potential 
  • Enhancing the landscape, ecological and functional value of repurposed lands
  • Maintaining, developing and improving public access to the mountain
  • Maintaining public access to grounds and, where possible, buildings
  • Favouring projects that benefit the community and preserve the public character of the sites

A Few Examples

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