The historical context of the site for a student residence in Montreal, Canada lead to the exploration of an innovative concrete fabrication technique; photoengraved concrete panels that enable the building to tell a story.
“The project encapsulates an architecture ‘parlante’; an architecture that heightens the intellectual and perceptual experience of its inhabitants by stimulating active looking.” says Kanva.
“The film sequence photoengraved into the concrete façade is extracted from the sequence of stills from the film: Montreal Fire Department on Runners (Edison, 1901). The film was carefully chosen for both its historical and contextual relevance: referencing the fire that vacated the site and highlighting the prolific inventor Thomas Edison, an important contributor to the development of ‘tableaux mouvants’ and motion pictures.”
“The panes of glass on the front facade are also screen-printed with complementary images, helping to achieve the desired sequential effect. As students occupy or visitors pass by the site, their proximity and angle relative to the façade, in addition to the speed at which move, transform the way the sequence is viewed.”
“The choice of program for the building, a student residence, came naturally due to the proximity of the University campus. The two defining public and private volumes host internally their respective private and public functions.”
“The intimate residence houses thirty (30) individual rooms, communal living spaces such as kitchen, lounge, living room etc. Each student room is designed as an optimal module, outfitted with floor to ceiling built-in storage that frames the bed along one wall, and allocates an alcove opposite to slide in a desk.”
“The primary entrance is through a porte-cochère, a contemporary tribute to Montreal’s traditional method of building a protected passage for horse carriages, which offers an intimate approach to the building.”
“Edison Residence creates an animated architecture by using new technology in a socially engaging way. It calls for participation and reflection by the viewer as he or she contemplates the transformation and evolution of the site, and by extension the City.”
Project Name: Edison Residence
Location: 3525 rue University, Montréal, QC
Mechanical/Electrical Engineer: _bouthillette parizeau
Structural Engineer: NCK inc.
Landscape Architect: Vlan paysages
Photoengraved concrete supplier: Reckli, Solubrik, Saramac
Lighting Designer: N/A
Project area: 9,000 sq.ft
Project budget: N/A
Completion date: August 2014