How often does a city get the chance to build a museum of history and archaeology directly above its very birthplace? This is exactly the opportunity that was afforded by the archaeological discoveries made on the site known as Pointe-à-Callière in Old Montréal.
gsmprjctº’s initial involvement with this major project involved the early feasibility studies to establish the parameters of the overall site. The Pointe-à-Callière museum was initially to include only a specific part of the archaeological remains but, at gsmprjctº’s urging, the decision was made to incorporate a section designated as the actual birthplace of Montréal. gsmprjctº launched the idea of creating a contemporary area for the museum complex that would be inextricably linked to the archaeological site, giving the city a not-to-be-missed tourist destination of international importance.
Later stages of the project involved the creation, production, and installation of a large-scale theatrical multimedia show (from the planning of its unique theatre suspended above the archaeological ruins to the creation of all audiovisual and mechanical effects and content), the interior design of the administrative offices and museum restaurant, and the integration of archaeological artefacts in all public spaces (including the washrooms!). The result is a unique museum that rises above evidence of more than 1,000 years of human activity, housing remarkable remains displayed in situ with absolute respect for their integrity.