Martin C. Barry
Construction got underway earlier this month on Espace Montmorency, a towering residential and commercial building complex in Laval’s downtown core that will be the city’s largest-ever mixed-use project when completed three years from now.
The modernistic $450 million urban hub is being built near Collège Montmorency, next to the University of Montreal’s Laval campus, as well as Place Bell, and will be directly connected to the Montréal region’s expanding multimodal public transit system via the Montmorency Metro station.
The project’s developers, Groupe Montoni and Fonds immobilier de solidarité FTQ, have a third partner, retirement residence builder/administrator Groupe Sélection, for the development and construction of the residential portion, which will integrate three different types of living spaces to serve the needs of a diverse intergenerational clientele.
According to the developers, Espace Montmorency will offer three of Groupe Sélection’s flagship products to create a community within the project: “frïdom,” which targets a clientele aged 55 and over, will offer 200 boutique apartments at a monthly “all-inclusive” price; REZ, which is aimed at a diversified clientele (young households, professionals and families), will offer 300 rental units at a value price; and Yimby, a banner designed by and for millennials, will offer 200 units for people under age 35.
The developers say that in addition to quality housing and neighbourhood services, common spaces will be designed to encourage intergenerational mingling and to foster a sense of belonging to a community for all.
Conceived in a style of bold architecture revolving around a “block design,” while aiming for both LEED Gold and LEED ND environmentally sustainable certification, Espace Montmorency is slated for completion in the fall of 2022. To facilitate construction management, the project is being divided into three parts.
The first part involves construction of the foundation, an underground parking lot with 1,400 spaces (connecting the project to Montréal’s underground network via the Montmorency Metro station) and a 150,000-square-foot commercial podium erected on two floors.
The second part will see construction of towers 1 and 4, which will house 700 residential units over 635,000 square feet. And a third part will be the construction of tower 2, which will offer 350,000 square feet of office space, and tower 3, which will include a 180-room hotel.
Citing Espace Montmorency’s modern and user-friendly workspace, as well as easier access to parking and the Metro, Laval-based Groupe Sélection has announced that it will be moving its head office to the Espace Montmorency complex when it is completed.
‘Smart building’ technology
Espace Montmorency is also expected to be completely outfitted with “smart building” technology, allowing a wide variety of web-enabled services to facilitate things like food preparation, parking, security and building management.
“True to our values, we have carefully planned Espace Montmorency so as to combine sustainable design and high-quality spaces while respecting the environment,” Groupe Montoni president Dario Montoni said during an official launch held on June 11.
“We are very proud to break ground today,” added Montoni. “With the expertise of our partners, we are confident that the project will be completed on schedule. We chose to build this multifunctional project in a single phase so that future occupants can fully enjoy the Espace Montmorency experience as soon as the work is finished.”
Leap forward for core area
Mayor Marc Demers said that Espace Montmorency is “a major project in the development of the City of Laval’s downtown area. We have been working on it for several years now. It is a wonderful project that represents the direction in which the City of Laval wants to develop itself and that adds one more ingredient to the development of the city’s centre.”
“We are proud to contribute to Espace Montmorency, an innovative project that embodies a new way of thinking about urban development,” said Groupe Sélection founding president and CEO Réal Bouclin. “This flagship project for the City of Laval is in line with our mission to create communities by building living spaces that foster business relationships and bring together individuals of all generations.”