Designed by Affleck + de la Riva architects, Square des Frères-Charon is an entirely new public amenity in a space that is more than 150 years old. The new square provides identity, civic pride, and generous outdoor areas for all-season public use.
The project uses a simple, refined, and minimalist architectural language to create a dialogue between circular and cylindrical forms including a garden of wild grasses, the vestiges of the windmill and a park pavilion in the form of a belvedere-folly. Complementing these gestures, the lighting scheme proposes a chromatic garden that alludes to the changing seasons.
Square des Frères-Charon’s street level public domain was carefully designed to insure it is comfortable, safe, and wheel-chair accessible. Sustainable initiatives include the planting of local species of wild grasses which take a significant load off the municipal irrigation system and the use of durable Quebec granite for hard landscaping and the cladding of the park pavilion.
The square is an essential component of McGill Street’s larger network of historic spaces and a key element in Montreal’s cultural tourism branding strategy.