Montreal City Hall

The five-storey Montreal City Hall (French: Hôtel de Ville de Montréal) is the work of architects Henri-Maurice Perrault and Alexander Cowper Hutchison, and was built between 1872 and 1878 in the Second Empire style. It is located in Old Montreal, between Place Jacques-Cartier and the Champ de Mars, at 275 Notre-Dame Street East. The closest metro station is Champ-de-Mars.

As one of the best examples of the Second Empire style in Canada, and the first city hall to have been constructed in the country solely for municipal administration, it was designated a National Historic Site in Canada in 1984.

History and architecture

Construction on the building began in 1872 and was completed in 1878. The building was gutted by fire in March 1922, leaving only the outer wall and destroying much of the city's historic records. The architect Louis Parant was commissioned for the reconstruction, who decided to build an entirely new building with a self-supporting steel structure built inside the shell of the ruins. This new building was modelled after the city hall of the French city of Tours. Other changes included a remodelling of the Mansard roof into a new Beaux-Arts inspired model, with a copper roof instead of the original slate tiles.

In 1967, from this building's balcony Charles de Gaulle, then president of France, gave his Vive le Québec libre speech.


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