Maison symphonique de Montréal
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The outcome of a public-private partnership, the Maison symphonique de Montréal was built within the framework of a large-scale project – that of creating a new concert hall offering an outstanding auditory and visual experience. Located at the Place des Arts, the six-storey building (not counting the technical levels) covers an area of more than 19,187 m2. The Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (OSM)’s official home boasts a seating capacity of up to 2,100 spectators.
Considerable use was made of beech in the Maison symphonique’s interior fittings, enhancing the stability of walls, floors, stairs and balcony fronts. Thanks to steam treatment, beech is endowed with superior durability and dimensional stability. More than 18,580 m2 of wood thus envelops spectators in a cocoon-like environment. The only exception consisted of the use of oiled red maple from the Gatineau region in the flooring and stage risers.
Two main types of finishing were used with the wall panelling. To begin with, an entirely smooth finish was applied over approximately 70% of the surface. A second, rougher type of finish was obtained using a studded wheel. The resulting fine texture, which conforms to the veins of the wood, serves to absorb occasionally undesirable very high frequencies.
The use of wood has resulted in exceptional acoustics. Wood, a living, organic material, has always been a natural choice on account of its resonance. In the case of the Maison symphonique de Montréal, the wood planking was even nailed to the concrete underlay so as to minimize vibration and thereby avoid producing a “dry,” sterile sound.
The overall cost of the project was $110 million.
Winning Project Quebec (Cecobois)