The design for the new Faculty of Music building givesprominence to the southeast corner of the McGill University campus at Sherbrooke and Aylmer streets in downtown Montreal. The new building is adjacent to Strathcona building, the existing home of the music’s faculty.
The multimedia studio anchors the design of the complex. It is a polished limestone volume almost five stories high that is embedded three storey into the ground at the north end of the lot. Practice rooms and technical studios also inhabit the underground realm south of the multimedia studio. Above these submerged space, at street level, are located the recital hall and main entrance. A folded concrete plane defines these spaces and appears to support the main body of the building above. This plane evokes an Eroded ground plane leading to Montreal’s prominent mount beyond. A three-storey high library sits above the recital hall, over which are three additional stores of office and practice space. The new building is linked to the other faculty buildings by a glazed bridge that runs through the main entrance hall.
The building’s east and west façade are planes that frame the views of the city toward the mountain. The east façade is clad in black and gray zinc while the west pattern of matt and polished aluminum reflects the Strathcona building. The glazed front surface allows exquisite daylight to permeate the library and conference spaces, creating interior environments conducive to learning and research for the visitors and occupants of the Faculty of Music.