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Habitat 67

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Address:    2600 Avenue Pierre-Dupuy
Montreal, QC, H3C 3R6
District:     Old Montreal
Architect: Moshe Safdie
Built in:    1967
Web Site:    www.habitat67.com

Profile

Commissioned by the city for World Expo 67, this groundbreaking housing complex by then very young architect Moshe Safdie elicits contractictory emotions from Montreal visitors and residents alike. Some praise its unique concept, valuing privacy, access to the city center, versatile apartment shapes providing multiple exposures and a patch of green space ("everybody gets a rooftop garden!"), street-like configuration of its hallways and amazing views afforded by its location. Others criticise the stern fortress-like look and point out that the project essentially failed as a stand-alone housing community (because of the unexpectedly high cost of engineering, the complex was only partially built). One thing is certain, nobody is indifferent.

Access

You can easily view the building from rue de la Commune in Old Montreal, but if you want to take a closer look, you'll need to take a shuttle bus from Downtown Montreal (av McGill College).

Information last updated: 17/Sep/2008

Related Articles

The Habitat
Posted by Slavito in Montreal + Places on 09/Nov/2007
HabitatA visiting Parisian recently made me laugh. Stretched on the grass next to the esplanade in the Old Port, she suddenly noticed Habitat 67's retro-futuristic assemblage across the Lachine Canal.

"Et ├ža" - she said, peering confusedly at the distant building - "Ce sont des logements sociaux?" ("And that... that's a housing project?"). I laughed because although nothing could be further from the truth (the internationally acclaimed building houses well-to-do Montrealers - one could even say, the city's elite) many people somehow make a similar mistake. They are put off by the building's stern look, uninviting color and absurd shape, and so they wrongly assume something of the sort can only be used to house the underclass. I am here to clear up the confusion and defend the merits of Habitat 67...

Read the rest of: "The Habitat

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