365 Canadian Sights | Day 346: Universities Week – Pavillon Roger-Gaudry

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| Image from Flickr/Peter Macdonald via CC BY NC 2.0 |

Let’s be honest, art deco influences anywhere are going to make this list.

One building towers over l’Université de Montréal — Pavillon Roger-Gaudry.

The monumental structure has been around since WW2 (it was actually started more than a decade earlier) when the university built it as their new centre. At 82 meters and  22-storeys, it’s a pretty formidable tower, truly towering over its neighbouring buildings.

While newer university buildings go for a modern look which edges on sci-fi often, and classic old buildings look wealthy and wise, this structure is imposing and stoic, another fitting metaphor for the authority of the university.

Why more art deco isn’t seen on Canadian campuses, I don’t know. Maybe its peak was an era when fewer buildings were being built or something, and WW2 didn’t help as resources were put towards the war effort.

The university is just on the other side of the Mount Royal from downtown, so not too far from the core, but far enough that you’ll probably want wheels. Transit is an obvious option, since it’s a university and it’s probably easier to navigate if you’re new to MTL.

It’s not somethign that shows up on TripAdvisor, but luckily there are a few places that recognize it as a siht worth visiting. The federal government has put together a bio on it, though I don’t see it listed in the federal historic building registry, but maybe I’m missing it. University Affairs, a magazine on Canadian universities listed it as one of the countries iconic university buildings. And, if you can read French, this site has some history on it.

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