Bonaventure Expressway

Transformation of the Bonaventure Expressway
at the Downtown Gateway
Summary of the project feasibility studies

View of Bonaventure Expressway towards Peel Basin, 2004.

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2004

View of site for future central city blocks and Surrounding area of Bonaventure Expressway.

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2005

Arial view of Bonaventure Expressway in 2005.

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2005

Arial view of Bonaventure Expressway in 2005.

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2005

Cross section of proposed buildings and rail viaduct.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Cross section of proposed buildings and rail viaduct.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Cross section of proposed buildings in area bounded by Saint- Maurice, Saint-Henri, William and Prince streets.

Faubourg des Récollets

The new neighbourhood's structure is consolidated by a network of pedestrian walkways and public spaces, linked to the public transportation system. This network is part of the civic attraction of the area and helps distinguish between commercial and residential spaces. In this respect, the creation of a garden on the former site of the Petit Séminaire's courtyard reinforces this idea. Moreover, the proposal also suggests the reconfiguration of certain streets, like Saint-Maurice Street, by widening the sidewalks and lining it with trees, in order make to make it more attractive to pedestrians. This rehabilitation also helps slow the automobile traffic, in a neighbourhood that is more and more inhabited.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Real estate development potential

The lowering of the expressway contributes to urban renewal, freeing-up 17,370 m2 of land for development. Moreover, the faubourg des Récollets provides 64 485 m2 of available land. In addition, the CN rail viaduct has 20,495 m2 of ground-level space, part of which can be used for commercial or public purposes.

Thus, this total space provides a development potential of more than 415,000 m2. The envisaged programming focuses especially on commercial (offices and hotel) and residential use.

The central city blocks, municipally owned, could accommodate nearly 600 residential units in the central city blocks, 5.000 m2 of retail business space and 43,000 m2 of office space.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Canadian National rail viaduct

The transformation of the Bonaventure corridor into a large urban arterial boulevard proposes a new interface between the rail viaduct and De Nazareth Street. The commercial or public use of the viaduct is proposed in order to start the revitalisation of the surrounding city blocks. The original openings could be reopened so as to increase the conviviality, transparency and the feeling of security of passers-by.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Faubourg des Récollets frontage : built frontage and faubourg-style city blocks

The buildings lining Duke Street, mark the boundary of the faubourg des Récollets. Extending from the first buildings of the Cité Multimédia, the construction of a series of buildings completes the top of the city blocks of the faubourg. Certain blocks of Duke Street have existing quality buildings or typical architecture. They can be preserved if their physical condition allows it. Their cohabitation with the new buildings will continue the dynamic environment created in the Cité Multimédia. The buildings that make up this frontage have a commercial vocation, mainly on the ground floor while offices can be on the floors above.

The future configuration of the city blocks replicates the historical fabric of the area.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Central city blocks

The succession of central city blocks presents a line of parallel buildings. The two ends of this line, both to the north and the south, give way to landscaped "green" city blocks that signal thresholds between the arterial boulevard and the downtown area (north), or the arterial boulevard and the more expressway-like part of the Bonaventure (south). The wide sidewalks of the future arterial boulevard as well as the forecourts of the buildings are primarily designed as places that allow conviviality and socialization.

A "signature" architecture, elegant and original, is appropriate to this new urban section, thereby allowing a certain cohabitation with the Canadian National rail viaduct.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

RÉSO walking network - the underground city

At the northern threshold of the new urban arterial boulevard, the planned construction of a commercial building makes it possible to create a link with the Metro network. The scope of the real estate projects envisaged for these city blocks will justify the extension of the underground corridors. Two RÉSO circuits (the underground city) can converge on the site, coming from the Bonaventure and the Victoria Square Métro stations. These underground corridors make it possible to link a series of worker or visitor destinations in downtown Montreal. Depending on the development of the city blocks further south, the RÉSO can be extended along the future arterial boulevard corridor.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Faubourg des Récollets

The new neighbourhood's structure is consolidated by a network of pedestrian walkways and public spaces, linked to the public transportation system. This network is part of the civic attraction of the area and helps distinguish between commercial and residential spaces. In this respect, the creation of a garden on the former site of the Petit Séminaire's courtyard reinforces this idea. Moreover, the proposal also suggests the reconfiguration of certain streets, like Saint-Maurice Street, by widening the sidewalks and lining it with trees, in order make to make it more attractive to pedestrians. This rehabilitation also helps slow the automobile traffic, in a neighbourhood that is more and more inhabited.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Central city blocks

The succession of central city blocks resents a line of parallel buildings. The two ends of this line, both to the north and the south, give way to landscaped "green" city blocks that signal thresholds between the arterial boulevard and the downtown area (north), or the arterial boulevard and the more expressway-like part of the Bonaventure (south). The wide sidewalks of the future arterial boulevard as well as the forecourts of the buildings are primarily designed as places that allow conviviality and socialization. The line of street furniture and the sidewalk greenery give a well groomed setting to the avenues on a scale appropriate to pedestrians.

The narrow profile of the central city blocks contributes to the development of more tall and slender architectural volumes. A "signature" architecture, elegant and original, is appropriate to this new urban section, thereby allowing a certain cohabitation with the Canadian National rail viaduct

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

In implementing its work plan, the SHM commissioned an urban development study for the first phase of the transformation of the Bonaventure Expressway, between Brennan and Saint-Jacques streets. The scenario selected by the SHM aims at creating the conditions of a large urban arterial boulevard, with lanes located on both sides of a string of central city blocks, available for future development. The transformation of this expressway section frees up land owned by the City of Montreal and complements the redevelopment of the adjacent districts (QIM, Cité Multimédia and Griffintown).

This project thus transforms the main Montreal gateway into an inhabited and vibrant district, located in an extension of the downtown area.

Illustration : Cardinal Hardy

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Project area « secteur d'intervention »

The project area, defined as the « secteur d'intervention », covers approximately 30 hectares. It is bordered by the CN rail viaduct to the west, Saint-Jacques and Saint-Antoine streets to the north, Queen, Saint-Henri and Gauvin streets to the east and De la Commune Street to the south.

The lots under the elevated structure of the Bonaventure Expressway, between Duke and De Nazareth streets, belongs to the City of Montreal.

© Société du Havre de Montréal, 2007

Bonaventure Expressway - VISION 2025

Bonaventure Expressway Vision 2025 : Plan view

The plan view is a graphic representation of the proposed changes to the current Bonaventure Expressway corridor.

Relocating the Bonaventure Expressway in the Technoparc will make it possible to create an extensive riverside park with bicycle paths and walking trails connecting the recreational facilities of the Borough of Verdun, Jean Drapeau Park, the Lachine Canal and the Old Port, as well as new links between Point St. Charles and the riverbank. Dismantling the expressway will also make it possible to develop vast tracts of land to the west of the Technoparc that are inaccessible today.

Demolishing the existing elevated highway starting at the Victoria Bridge and replacing it with a boulevard and tunnel underneath the Lachine Canal will extend the downtown area to the Peel Basin. With the expressway gone, significant residential development will be possible. Pierre Dupuy Avenue and Riverside Street will be reconfigured to improve access to industrial and port activities in the area.

The Bonaventure Expressway between Wellington and Notre Dame streets will be converted into a divided urban boulevard. With the Faubourg des Récollets and Griffintown joined up, the area will harken back to the way it was historically. The land freed up as result will be developed in the same spirit as the renewal work being done in the Faubourg des Récollets, the Cité Multimédia and the Quartier International, transforming Montréal's main gateway into a lively residential neighbourhood that is an extension of downtown.

Illustration : Lemay associés

Peel Basin

Photo : Société du Havre de Montréal, 2005

 

Demolishing the existing elevated highway starting at the Victoria Bridge and replacing it with a boulevard and tunnel underneath the Lachine Canal will extend the downtown area to the Peel Basin. With the expressway gone, significant residential development will be possible, especially on the north side of the Peel Basin. More than 4,000 housing units could be created in this area within the VISION 2025 timeframe.

An overpass for pedestrians and cyclists east of the Peel Basin is being proposed as part of the greenbelt, to make it easier to cross the Lachine Canal. Providing public passageways between the Lachine Canal and the Cité du Havre will breathe life back into the basin area and open up the possibility of new land uses without compromising existing industrial operations. The area around the Tate and Wellington basins would be an ideal site for the installation of high-use tourist facilities. The rediscovery of the various basins at the foot of Peel Street has focussed attention on a hub whose spokes lead to the recreational facilities of the Old Port, the Lachine Canal and Jean Drapeau Park.

Illustration : Lemay associés

Gateway to city near downtown, intersection of Brennan and Nazareth streets

Photo : Société du Havre de Montréal, 2005

 

The Bonaventure Expressway between Wellington and Notre Dame streets will be replaced by a urban boulevard with a median wide enough to allow for construction of both buildings and green spaces. With the Faubourg des Récollets and Griffintown joined up, the area will harken back to the way it was historically.

The land freed up as result will be developed in the same spirit as the renewal work being done in the Faubourg des Récollets and the Cité Multimédia. To the south of the new islands will be public squares offering citizens new greenspaces and transforming Montréal's main gateway into a lively residential neighbourhood that is an extension of downtown. Dismantling the expressway will make it possible to develop another 15,000 m2 of new greenspace.

Illustration : Lemay associés

Gateway to the city near Peel Basin, intersection of University and Notre Dame streets

Photo : Société du Havre de Montréal, 2005

 

The Bonaventure Expressway between Wellington and Notre Dame streets will be replaced by a urban boulevard with a median wide enough to allow for construction of both buildings and green spaces. With the Faubourg des Récollets and Griffintown joined up, the area will harken back to the way it was historically.

The land freed up as result will be developed in the same spirit as the renewal work being done in the Quartier International and permit the development of major potential commercial real estate. In fact, 265,000 m2 of retail outlets and office space could be created in this area within the VISION 2025 timeframe.

Along Duke Street, new buildings will replace the parking lots that now dominate the cityscape. West of Nazareth Street, the proposal targets development of public spaces around the rehabilitated Canadian National Railway right-of-way, with retail outlets, public services and other appealing features.

Illustration : Lemay associés

Waterfront

Photo : Société du Havre de Montréal, 2005

 

Moving the Bonaventure Expressway will allow development of an extensive riverside park covering 235,000 m2 with bicycle paths and walking trails connecting the recreational facilities of the Borough of Verdun, Jean Drapeau Park, the Lachine Canal and the Old Port.

Restoring the riverbanks, by raising the water level and reintroducing aquatic vegetation, will give users a new view of the river. When incorporated into the linear park, this significant new facility will be accessible to all Montrealers and will become the focus of recreational activities on the banks of the St. Lawrence. It will also highlight major heritage assets such as the Victoria Bridge, Montréal's first span across the river.

Illustration : Lemay associés