Devimco Immobilier recently broke ground on Phase 1 of Solar Uniquartier, a development that is being touted as Quebec’s biggest mixed-use real estate project. The project, which is referred to as “the South Shore’s new downtown”, now accounts for an investment of $1.3 billion, which is $300 million more than the initial estimate.
The project, a joint effort between Devimco Immobilier, Fonds immobilier de solidarité FTQ, Fondaction, Devimco Investissement and a Quebec pension plan, will feature residential, commercial and office space, as well as a 184-room Courtyard by Marriott hotel in its first phase. Clients of the hotel will have access to a conference centre with four multi-function rooms with a capacity of over 1,000 people.
Solar Uniquartier meets the criteria laid out in the Metropolitan Land-Use and Development Plan – PMAD from the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal in terms of sustainable development of the territory through densification and mixed uses in areas with easy access to public transit and active transportation.
“The buildable area in the first phase of our new project will be 650,000 square feet,” said Serge Goulet, president of Devimco Immobilier, in a press release. “The project’s innovative concept will bring future residents, workers and consumers together in a multi-use neighbourhood, giving the community the opportunity to live, work and play in the same place. The mixed-use concept will be applied starting in the first phase.”
When complete, Solar Uniquartier will feature 2,600 housing units; the tallest residential tower on the South Shore, featuring 245 rental units and 125 condo units; over 130,000 square feet of green space; 1.2 million square feet of commercial and office space; two hotels, a conference centre and a European-inspired sports, health and recreation complex; and a public square facing the future Du Quartier light rail station.
“We are pleased to be a partner in an original and innovative initiative that is at the leading edge of sustainable development,” added Léopold Beaulieu, president and CEO of Fondaction. “This mixed real estate project, with its encouragement of public transit and of neighbourhood services in an eco-district, will have clear social benefits while helping fight climate change and supporting the region’s economic development, in particular through job creation.”
Solar Uniquartier will be the first transit-oriented development (TOD) project revolving around Montreal’s future light-rail transit network, Réseau électrique métropolitain. It will also be the only residential project that is linked indoors to a light-rail station (Du Quartier station). This will allow Solar Uniquartier residents to reach downtown Montreal in 10 minutes.
In addition, the City of Brossard plans to broaden and extend Boulevard du Quartier by building an overpass above Highway 10 to help alleviate traffic problems. It will also feature a covered pedestrian and bicycle passageway as well as a ramp providing access to Highway 10.
“We are applying all the TOD principles with this project,” added Goulet. “The future neighbourhood is designed in keeping with innovative planning practices, promoting sustainable development and an environmentally responsible approach, with green spaces playing a central role in the project.”