July 12, 2023

Les Ensembliers Renovates A Pied-à-Terre In The Iconic Habitat 67 Complex

Like a set of blocks stacked on the bank of the St. Lawrence River, Habitat 67 isn’t just an apartment complex, it’s part of Montreal history. Built in 1967 as part of Expo 67, the unique Brutalist structure was Moshe Safdie’s thesis project while studying architecture at McGill University. Moshe, who later went on to design the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and the awe-inspiring Jewel Changi Airport in Singapore, had a vision for dense living quarters in the heart of the city that would still offer a suburban sense of privacy and space.

Constructed on Cité-du-Havre, an artificial peninsula, Habitat 67 is composed of prefabricated concrete blocks arranged to create 148 residences. Instead of a tall tower with long corridors, blocks are stacked lengthwise and connect through outdoor passageways that weave through landscaped gardens. “They’re like little houses in disguise,” says Richard Ouellette of Les Ensembliers.

Richard and partner Maxime Vandal were given carte blanche by their client to transform the two-block, 1,300-square-foot unit into a sleek pied-à-terre. (She has a place outside Montreal with her husband, but often stays in the city when she’s working.)

Scroll down to see how they transformed this heritage condo!

Author: Simone Olivero

André Rider


Richard Ouellette and Maxime Vandal