The real estate project at Montreal’s Viger Train Station is about to be revived in a new form. But will there be condos in the former Viger Train Station?
The latest talk is about 700 rental apartments, a shopping center and offices. The initial project development of the Viger Railway Station dates back to 2006. The heritage building should be integrated to new residential buildings, offices, shops and a luxury hotel. The area around the Viger Train Station is beginning to change thanks to the erection of the new MUHC super hospital and a large research center, which are well underway.
In hopes that the historical building will be transformed into a real estate project of new condos or a hotel. It must be understood that only the external architecture has a great heritage value because the work done by the city of Montreal in 1954-1955 to transform the inside of Viger Station into office spaces would not win design awards. No elements from that period have, unfortunately, been preserved. The Viger Train Station is a real architectural jewel of Montreal. Interesting fact… its architecture reminds you of the most famous building in Quebec, the Chateau Frontenac? Quite normal because the Viger Train Station and Chateau Frontenac were designed by the same (Bruce Price).
Viger Train Station
Place Viger was both a grand hotel and railway station in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, constructed in 1898 and named after Jacques Viger, Montreal’s first mayor. Although combined stations and hotels were common in the United Kingdom in the late 19th century, the concept was unique to Canada.
Place Viger was designed by Bruce Price for the Canadian Pacific Railway, and was built near what was then the central core of Montreal, in proximity to the financial district, the city hall, the port and the court house. The mayor of Montreal, Raymond Préfontaine, strongly encouraged its construction in an area central to the French Canadian élites, in contrast to the rival Windsor Hotel to the west, which was perceived to cater to the city’s anglophone classes. The rail station served as the terminus of the CP passenger rail lines running into downtown Montreal from the north and east. It replaced the older Dalhousie Station. Its counterpart terminus for CP passenger rail lines running into downtown Montreal from the south and west was Windsor Station.
Constructed in the château-style common to Canada’s railway hotels, Place Viger housed the railway station in its lower levels and a luxurious hotel on the upper floors. Place Viger enjoyed an enviable setting among the Viger Gardens, allowing both railway travellers and hotel guests to stroll along the garden paths.
The shifting of Montreal’s commercial core to the north-west, and the onset of the economic depression of the 1930s, proved disastrous for Place Viger. The hotel closed in 1935. In 1951, the railway station was also closed, and the building was sold to the City of Montreal. The interiors were gutted and transformed to non-descript office space, and the building was renamed Édifice Jacques-Viger. Much of the Viger Gardens was destroyed in the 1970s to allow for the construction of the Autoroute Ville-Marie highway, and the remainder of the gardens was transformed into a little-travelled public square (named “Viger Square”), with much-criticized concrete landscaping by artist Charles Daudelin. For decades, Place Viger sat isolated and neglected, a striking historic building surrounded by concrete and a highway.
In 2003, the Commission scolaire de Montréal, the City of Montreal and the Quebec provincial government announced that Place Viger would house a new École des métiers du tourisme (a school of tourism). In 2004, the Borough of Ville-Marie announced that it would restore what remains of the nearby public gardens, by replacing much of the concrete in Viger Square with trees, paths and other soft landscaping.
Alternative names Édifice Jacques-Viger
Architectural style Châteauesque
Construction started 1898
Architect Bruce Price
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia