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The Montreal Holocaust Museum (MHM) announces the launch of an international architectural competition for the design of a new building on Saint-Laurent Boulevard in Montreal. The competition seeks to address the important issues of places dedicated to Holocaust remembrance and, more importantly, to the education of future generations to the universal risks of racism, antisemitism, hatred and indifference. The Museum aims to achieve the highest level of architectural excellence, to make a lasting impression on the landscape of Saint-Laurent Boulevard, to connect with new audiences, and to create a significant impact on present and future generations.

The Montreal Holocaust Museum has acquired a site situated at 3535 Saint-Laurent Boulevard. Saint-Laurent Boulevard is rich in history and has significant symbolic and heritage importance for the Jewish community and for the francophone, anglophone, and all immigrant communities. It is a symbol of cultural diversity, a space of artistic and technological creativity and laboratory of ideas. The site, which has been vacant for more than forty years, has a surface area of nearly 1860 square meters and a frontage on the boulevard of 44 meters. It is currently occupied by a large outdoor parking area and two vernacular buildings located on the southwest corner of the site.

The key issues and challenges facing designers are:

  • The architecture must appeal to current and future generations, not only visitors but also the citizens and decision-makers of tomorrow.
  • The architecture must contribute to the expression of the Museum’s values of inclusion, equality and respect for diversity, notably by reinforcing the Museum’s presence in the public space.
  • The architecture must allow for a dialogue between spaces dedicated to commemoration and reflection and those dedicated to learning and awareness in a journey that opens perspectives between the present, the past, and the future.
  • The new Museum must fit into the site and assert its presence in a contemporary and sensitive manner, taking into account the historical and symbolic aspects related to Saint- Laurent Boulevard and the existing buildings on the site.
  • The new Museum must take advantage of the effervescence and diversity of Saint- Laurent Boulevard to create a platform open to encounters and exchanges through accessible and convivial public spaces
  • Outdoor spaces should be designed to integrate with the Museum and enrich the visitor experience.
  • Innovative solutions should be used to provide flexible spaces that allow for various activities and respond to changing needs.
  • The building must meet or exceed current standards and implement best practices, particularly in museology, universal accessibility and sustainable development.
  • The Museum is aiming for LEED Silver certification, the intention being to create an exemplary building in terms of sustainable development, both in terms of respect for the environment and the quality of the proposed spaces.

Eligibility

Any architectural firm or consortium meeting the following criteria is eligible to compete:

  • Have within its team an architectural firm having an office in Quebec or being an architectural firm established in Quebec.
  • Having realized at least two (2) cultural projects, one (1) of at least 1,000 square meters and one (1) of at least 3,000 square meters.
  • Having realized at least one (1) museum project.
  • At least one (1) of these projects must have been realized by the project architect of the proposed team.
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