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Stade de Soccer Geological Architecture for Sport

Saucier + Perrotte Architectes | HCMA

Stade de Soccer Geological Architecture for Sport
By Raymund Ryan -

The United States has historically looked westward, from the first European settlements on the East Coast, across the prairies and Rocky Mountains all the way to California. Canada has similarly looked west, from Québec and the Maritime Provinces to oil-rich Alberta and scenic British Colombia. Canada however also looks north, from population clusters along the U.S. border north beyond the tree line to distant tundra and icy redoubts above the Arctic Circle. Some consequential spirit of ground and sky, impacted by light and nature, animates the architecture of Gilles Saucier and André Perrotte. Their buildings view and frame a mythic horizon.

Saucier + Perrotte Architectes operates out of Montréal, one of the most historic of Canadian cities and one with a hardy yet elegant character evocative of both Europe and North America. Even when dealing with urban infill sites, Saucier and Perrotte invest their architecture with topographical or topological strategies, with layering visible in plan, section and elevation. The outcomes are not simple representations of the natural world but embrace the potential of structure and infrastructure to allow even comparatively modest projects achieve mass and to simultaneously provide shelter. Saucier + Perrotte Architectes’  most original work communicates a sense of habitation that is both literal and psychological.

The architects’ recently completed Stade de Soccer is in an inner suburb of Montréal and aligned with an axial artery, Avenue Papineau, as are other facilities for exhibition and leisure. It is therefore a highway building, that basic North American typology that triggered Venturi and Scott Brown’s dichotomy, now several decades ago, of building as “duck” versus building as “decorated shed”. Yet the Stade de Soccer is not a barrier to passersby. At key points, the structure opens up to permit access to the interior and,...

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