The Globe and Mail: Montreal’s Royal Vic hospital revitalized

For more information, please contact:
Andrea Chin, Communications Director

Martin Davidson, Principal

February 6, 2024

The New Vic is featured in an article by Wallace Immen for The Globe and Mail.

For more than a century, the castle-like Royal Victoria Hospital was a primary Montreal medical care facility. Now the complex of buildings at the northeast corner of the McGill University campus is being transformed for a new role: a global research and teaching hub dedicated to sustainability and public policy. 

“We are inspired with a goal of changing a place that was designed for healing the body into a centre devoted to the most critical issue of our time: healing the planet,” says Don Schmitt, Principal of the project’s architecture team, Diamond Schmitt/Lemay Michaud.

The hospital’s original design comprised three free-standing pavilions in the Scottish baronial style and, over the past century, it has had a number of additions. The hospital moved to a new facility in 2016 and the buildings have been vacant since.

The complex project will completely restore the deteriorating heritage hospital wings for reuse as teaching classrooms and meeting spaces. A modern slab-sided addition behind the historic hospital is being replaced with a new 350,000-square-foot building dedicated to research labs. The hospital forecourt, which had become a parking structure, will be replaced with a landscaped entrance pavilion leading to teaching, community and event spaces below ground, and accessible connections across the site at the foot of Mount Royal.

Building health and sustainability are at the forefront of the transformation. The project is aiming for LEED Gold and Well Gold certifications.

“This is an unbelievable opportunity for McGill to acquire a large downtown site contiguous with the campus,” says Martin Davidson, Principal at Diamond Schmitt. “It will become the new home for researchers currently scattered across the campus, bringing together sustainability initiatives from science, engineering and policy to collaborate and be truly multidisciplinary.”

Read the full article on The Globe and Mail here.