Mont-Royal Avenue is now closed to motorized vehicles for the second summer in a row between St. Laurent Boulevard and Fullum Street. This year’s landscaping project was designed to be a global, coherent, and safe experience that enhances mobility on the Avenue while ensuring a harmonious cohabitation between pedestrians and those on bikes, scooters, roller blades, etc. Keeping to the theme of strolls and gardens, the area will feature large-scale art installations, relaxation spots, meeting areas, and activity zones that will come together to create a unique pathway that is all about Slow Living to help passersby take advantage of everything they’ve been missing this past year. The installations will be completed by July 2nd and will remain in place until September 6th, 2021.

Strolls and gardens: 7 sites to explore

Seven artist, design, and architecture collectives were chosen following a call for projects to carry out garden installations that will enliven the Avenue. Multidisciplinary artists Isabelle Duguay and Julian Palma from MU will set up LA ROSERAIE, an immense garden-tableau on walls and the ground that will allow the passerby to soak in the magnificent beauty of roses. Érick Villeneuve (Novalux) and Jean Beaudoin (IJB) will create the JARDIN NOCTURNE installation: a sparkle of fireflies will illuminate the path amidst the shadows of night and plants. Manuel Baumann and Stéphanie Leduc from EN TEMPS ET LIEU will create the JARDIN DU SOLSTICE, an oasis of relaxation inspired by the French Riviera featuring seats, striped parasols, and lighting under trees to extend those wonderful summer nights. With PIQUE-NIQUE AU JARDIN, Le Comité invites you to take part in a memorable outdoor meal on one of three giant tables below a canopy of vines that are lit at night for a block party ambiance. LE JARDIN DE VENT by Émilie Proulx and Sacha Bulliard will act as a pollinating corridor throughout the Avenue between its various gardens. Firm Signature Design Communication will invite passersby to interact with the JARDIN DE CACTUS and its mirage, oasis, and snake in the “Far East” part of the Avenue. Last but not least, the JARDIN NOURRICIER by Biovercité presented by the Caisse Desjardins du Plateau Mont-Royal will be the most horticultural of all the gardens and include a cultural mediation angle. This will no doubt become a popular destination for urban gardeners who will feel at ease among its mature trees, vegetable garden beds, and gazebo where they can take part in free activities. Firm Castor et Pollux designed the Avenue plan, the signage, as well as the “Lien vert”: the guiding thread of the project connecting the seven creative gardens. EN TEMPS ET LIEU will oversee the artistic direction of this year’s pedestrian project.

Zone Lenteur for Slow Living and Vélo Duo

La Société de développement de l’avenue du Mont-Royal and the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough will be implementing the ZONE LENTEUR pilot project based on the recommendations of the City’s Urban Planning Service after a Léger survey of 700 residents last September and a consultation with major partners: Piétons Québec, Coalition Mobilité active Montréal, Société Logique, Vélo Québec and CRE-Montréal. In the Zone Lenteur, individuals on bikes, scooters, and skates will be able to meander the Avenue at the pace of pedestrians who will always have the right of way.

In this vein, from July 2nd to September 6th, four Velo Duo shuttles will be riding up and down the pedestrian Avenue between Wednesday and Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm. This free service will be available without advanced reservation but will give priority to senior citizens and those with mobility impairments. The service will also comply with health measures: Plexiglas between the driver and user and hand sanitizing gel available. The passenger area will be disinfected between each ride (the service will not be available in case of rain).

Other experiences on the Avenue this summer

Photo: Perséides StudioLes Diamants is an interactive installation that will be touring the province. But first, it will be installed on Mont-Royal Avenue between June 28th and August 8th, 2021. The piece comprises three bright and colourful rotating structures that activate when they are spun. Every module provides a different atmosphere, to the sounds of original music composed by Stefie Shock, that changes as the rotation speeds up or down. The piece is created by Francis Laporte and Alexis Laurence of Perséides studio, selected after the Intervalle call for projects. The initiative was made possible thanks to a partnership between the Quartier des spectacles, la Société de développement de l’avenue du Mont-Royal, the Rivière-des-Prairies-Pointe-aux-Trembles borough, Culture Trois-Rivières, and Downtown Montreal.

Montreal’s largest sidewalk sale, the Foire commerciale de l’Avenue, will be back this year. From August 26th to 29th, 2021, discover the artisans and merchants who make the Avenue a vibrant area while making some human connections.

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