PARC McGILL PARK CONCEPT
In "Reinventive McGill College Avenue" starts with a vision towards creating a memorable experience for all. The vision is to imagine the entire avenue wall to wall and end to end as a large linear and Green Space. By deduction then, we carve out only as little as need to serve other purposes.
- For community and public enjoyment, the vision is to design a Place for People rich in variety of public open spaces.
- A predominantly Green Space is marked by squares, walkways, trees, lights, 2 car and bicycle lanes, café, etc.
- The existing Crab Apple trees are relocated plus new trees, expanding the green space and walkable areas, particularly on the west sunny side.
- Existing open places in front of buildings, cafes and public art are preserved and enhanced by new landscaping and street furniture.
- Axial and linear geometry is invigorated for continuity and consistency of design throughout the Avenue.
- Landscaping will enhance pedestrian experience while walking, jogging, or in gathering places.
- Plants and vegetations are native, resilient species, to be carefully selected in Phase 2.
URBAN PUBLIC SPACE
- Lasting quality, sustainability, durability, functionality and beauty are hallmarks of Parc McGill Park design.
- A variety of pedestrian places are created.
- All existing gathering places, such as restaurant patios, public arts and spaces in front of the buildings are preserved and enhanced by the new design.
- Focal points are Piazzas, Water Pond, Snow Pods, Rock Gardens, Seating, and Entrances to buildings and underground.
- Heritage facades and special character of the avenue are preserved as an extension of McGill University and Mont Royal connecting to downtown core via St. Catherine and Palace Ville Marie.
- A major square is created opposite the McGill Gates to emphasize connectivity and continuity with the University and Mount Royal.
- A unique walkway, Colonnade starts here and meanders throughout with uninterrupted surface material extending to Place Ville Marie Grand Stairs.
- A space designed to capture exuberant existing at the intersection with St. Catherine.
- Water Pond features fountains and wading pool in summers and ice rink in winters.
- Snow pods on grass areas are envisaged to form a winter playground and family-friendly activities.
- Smart City information hot spots and hubs are located in gathering places.
- Outdoor seating of different variety will be places in strategic places for added comfort and enjoyment.
SOLAR POWERED TREES AND LIGHTS
- Atmospheric Light Pylons with capacity of changing colours along the length of the avenue will provide festive and seasonal experience
- Energy conservation and production, accomplished by solar light posts, as well as sculptural solar 'trees' with solar panels as branches.
- Colonnade is a continuous walkway travelling on sunny side from Cathcart to Sherbrook. In some places ramps up slightly for creating drama, and bends and winds to offer constantly varied vistas.
- Two remnants of the Colonnades on the west side are also proposed for visual melody, connectivity and reinforced sense of place.
- The Colonnade is given a spatial sculptural volume by flying triple ribbons in blue and white with mini LED lights travelling overhead end to end.
- The overhand ribbons up above colonnade are supported by an alternating double line of tree-like posts with a random rhythm on either side to evoke images of trees in forest.
- The colonnade is paved in wood planks akin to boardwalks by the sea for a distinctly different feel that other granite paved pedestrian surfaces.
- The organic form of the Colonnade revoking the trails in the forest and may be used for walking, jogging, and strolling.
CARS AND ROADS
- Reduction of driving lanes will prioritize pedestrian movement and safety.
- Mandatory right turns at intersections, 20Km speed limit and cobble stone pavement are proposed.
- Pedestrian safety corridor for access to buildings, underground pedestrian network and public transit stations, will be maintained at 3.3 m wide next to all buildings.
- Small pockets of short-term convenience parking are possible on a flexible seasonal need.
- Predominantly pedestrian character of the avenue will be accentuated by street paving and absence of standard asphalt-covered driveway.
- Varying paving patterns will provide distinction between pedestrian, motorist and cyclist paths, and contribute to traffic safety.
- Emergency vehicle access, as well as access to the Eaton Centre parking garage will be maintained.
- Materials selection will be local, recycled, renewables, healthy, and low-maintenance options,
- The drive lanes for cars and bikes are cobblestone to slow them down and to evoke feeling of being in a mountain hike.
- Patterned paving will comprise granite on walkways, and wood planks for Colonnade.
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