ADHOC architectes uses the kitchen table to reappropriate public space

The team of ADHOC Architectes would like you to join them at a table on the corner of Sainte-Catherine Ouest and Clark in Montréal. At least until sometime in October 2020.

The colourful installation titled Your Place at the Table! was conceived to safely accommodate and attract citizens currently reappropriating the downtown of Montréal after several weeks of confinement due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Designed in collaboration with graphic designers Maude Lescarbeau and Camille Blais, the layout is designed to offer passers-by a space to promenade or to sit and relax while respecting current sanitation and social distancing norms.

Your Place at the Table! is one of three public space TULIPs (les Terrasses Urbaines Libres au Public) that came from a mandate from the Partenariat du Quartier des Spectacles to produce artistic installations that would attract and stimulate traffic in the Quartier des Spectacles while maintaining social distancing measures.

ADHOC architectes was given the mandate to revisit the Hydro-Québec Parc designed by Claude Cormier et Associés (2008-2012), which received multiple prizes for its ecological qualities. ADHOC added a social component to the 3,260-sq.-m. site in the form of a 100-metre long “urban table,” implanted between the existing furniture and trees that perforate the elevated, angular metal grille in the centre of the site. The table undulates under the canopy of the trees, leaving visitors to discover a succession of staged place settings and varied atmospheres.

Completed in late July, the colour yellow dominates this tone-on-tone installation, while vibrant, custom graphic signage placed at the entrance of the park signals the beginning of the project. The public is then invited to discover the full length of the table and the place settings that punctuate it with eclectic collections of recycled objects, placed to subtly foster intuitive social distancing. The redesigned space proposes 80 seats and encourages the direct support of 22 local restaurants reopening in the cafeteria of Le Central.

Photography by Raphaël Thibodeau