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By Barbara Black
The stretch of De Maisonneuve Blvd between Bishop and Guy Sts has seen intense activity over recent months, adding to the construction of the new business school building nearby. Martine Lehoux, the university’s architect, told The Journal what’s going on and what we can hope for in terms of physical changes to the downtown campus.
“This has been preparatory work,” Lehoux said. “The City changed the water line along the north side of De Maisonneuve, and there was a full upgrade of the electrical distribution in the area by the CSEM, the Commission des Services Électriques de Montréal.
“We were very pleased to hear that the City is going to upgrade Bishop, Mackay and Guy right up to Sherbrooke St. with new sidewalks, lights and street signs. This upgrade will be done in 2010.”
A general contractor is starting work on the north phase of Place Bethune, the wedge-shaped green space that will support the statue of Norman Bethune. A ceremonial re-installation will be held with official Chinese participation in October.
“After that, the City of Montreal will move the underground infrastructure [gas and sewer lines] from underneath the sidewalk on the south side to run under the new road, and pave De Maisonneuve,” Lehoux said. The temporary bicycle path will be permanently installed along the south side of the newly built section of De Maisonneuve. The result will be a wider wedge of green space in front of the entrance of the Guy Metro Building.
Plans for Place Bethune include a distinctive marker, a big stainless steel C for Concordia. This steel sculpture, designed by Bélanger Branding with Cardinal Hardy, will be seen in other locations of Quartier Concorda and at Loyola.
Look for a new look for the ground-floor exterior of the now venerable Hall Building. It will have the rising-sun-open-book logo etched in the glass of its broad front window, along with the name “Concordia.” If you look closely, you’ll see that it is made up of text from the United Nations Human Rights Declaration’s section on the right to education, with key words translated into more than 30 languages.