Project type: Urban
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Client: Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal
Architect: CannonDesign, Neuf Architectes
Photographer: CannonDesign, Adrien Williams
The Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal’s (CHUM) fusion within the dense downtown of Montreal has raised issues of connection between the main hospital building and its important satellite buildings. The architectural and design team of CannonDesign + NEUF architect(e)s have said that they overcame the City’s challenge by designing a passerelle, also called a footbridge, or gangway, that acts as “…a floating lantern over Sanguinet Street, marking the entrance to the hospital. The perforations filtering the daylight create an interesting experience from the interior during the day for the staff passing through. At night, it is illuminated from the inside, creating a different experience for passersby on the street below. This type of intervention breaks the architecture down to a series of human experiences, within the scale of the project.”
This unique architectural element and its lighting is a result of a thorough study by the firm NEUF architects, in collaboration with Lumenpulse.
The fixtures are installed along each side of the pathway washing the interior of the curved copper panels. Their asymmetrical wallwash lighting, below and above the walkway, was perfect to flood the facade panels with uniform light, light which passes through the perforations, enlivening the entire design at night. The 194,000 perforations in the 3mm thick curved copper panels create a cloud of luminous rings that reflect the sun’s light during the day, but at night, filter the light emanating from within the structure to create a dramatic floating arch.
A new era of Montreal architecture has arrived, "We have integrated works to blur the line between art and architecture to provide patients, visitors and employees with a more human experience," says Azad Chichmanian, Associate Architect at NEUF architect(e)s.
The lighting system had to be robust and resistant to the elements. Lumenfacade fixtures have an anti-corrosion coating for hostile environments in addition to having an IP66 protection rating. The luminaires are 3GV rated for use on bridges, and thus are hardly enough to withstand the foot traffic and wind.
With the glass skeleton inside the gangway and the devices tilted, each fixture had to be individually adjusted to ensure uniform light. The remote lighting control system (DMX/RDM) thus provides full bi-directional control and communication for simple, convenient and faster commissioning. The brightness of each device also had to be adjustable to create the effect of continuity without highlighting the slope of the glass parts inside. This was also very important so as to prevent spill towards the people traversing the overpass.
The CHUM passerelle has already won several awards abroad. In 2016, the design team won an A+ Award from Architizer in New York, as well as an A Design Award from the European Healthcare Design Forum in London. Last June, the team won first prize in the categories Illumination and Public Choice for the CHUM Gateway, presented by the Azure AZ Awards. Last July, the CannonDesign + NEUF architect team was named a finalist in four categories at the World Architecture Festival (WAF) and the I NSIDE World Festival of Interiors. The passerelle has also received a Future Healthy Built Environment Award from the Stockholm-based International Academy for Design & Health. The team has also been nominated as a finalist in the Facade Design and Engineering category at the ABB LEAF Awards in London.
Lumenfacade, 3ft, 3500K, Wallwash Optic