Featured project: Le Monastère des Augustines / ABCP Architecture


Text description provided by the architects. The Monastère des Augustines, site of the first hospital in America north of Mexico, offers visitors a unique holistic wellness experience and direct contact with the rich heritage of the Augustinian Sisters. The new reception hall, playing with transparency, showcases the ancient building wings that have been completely restored and refurbished to accommodate the new proposed activities.

The project includes a museum visitor’s path describing the legacy of the Augustinian Sisters and their contribution to the development of health care in Quebec, as well as archives, an exhibition space, a restaurant, areas reserved for retreats, and a guest room section focusing on holistic health. An entire floor has been added above the sisters’ residence to house a conservation facility for the collections of all the twelve Augustinian monasteries in Quebec.

The new reception hall, a structurally separate interstitial building, is located where the circulation zones from the various wings intersect. This glassed-in section is designed to reflect the community’s openness, house the reception areas, clearly define the circulation zones, and showcase the historic buildings’ façades. Conceptually, this new building consists of a central hall bordered by a screen wall (an analogy to the grid of the grand parlor - the nuns were cloistered until 1960) and a completely transparent connector, which deploys in gateways in front of the Sisters’ Choir.

The project also includes the restoration of the historic buildings’ roofs and facades, the repair of all the layered windows, the addition of a new staircase, the integration of mechanical services to the old buildings, normative and safety adjustments, structural repairs, restoration and refurbishment of interiors from the ancient vaults to the attic, new contemporary rooms, the restoration of all finishes and built-in furniture, landscaping, as well as the demolition of outdated tunnels, the existing entry building and other accessory constructions.

Product Description. Parklex real wood stratified louvers were used in the main hall (wall and ceiling) instead of massive wood planks to comply with code restrictions, allowing us to keep the warm visual feel of real wood. The louvers were used to include black insulation boards underneath to upgrade the acoustic of the hall. It was also possible to install them inside and out, which was conceptually required.

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