The Collège Sainte-Anne is reinventing itself
BUILDING THE SCHOOL OF THE FUTURE?! WITH PLEASURE!
In 2019, when the President – General Manager of Collège Sainte-Anne presented his project to build a new high school on the site of the elementary school in Dorval it immediately sparked our interest. As he explained his vision of the project, the more we felt appealed by his way of thinking and his desire to do things differently; to break out of the mould and reinvent the learning environment to meet the needs of young students and future citizens. He wanted to build a creative, collaborative and unique learning environment with open classrooms, green walls, huge bleachers over two floors in the centre of the building, and an abundance of natural light. An innovative and environmentally friendly project designed by architect Pierre Thibault. This building will be carbon neutral, the very first in Canada.
THE CRITICAL PHASE OF CONSTRUCTION PLANNING
From our preliminary discussions with the client, we identified and proposed time and money-saving solutions such as the use of the BIM (Building Information Modelling) approach. The design of 3D models of the building with all its components allows us to detect clashes between the different components of the project (structural, electrical, mechanical, interior systems, etc.) and to readjust the plans and technical drawings before the start of work. This way, we minimize changes during construction and are therefore more efficient.
A MAJOR FIRE DEVASTATES ONE OF THE TWO ELEMENTARY SCHOOL BUILDINGS BEFORE WORK BEGINS
As we were finalizing design details of the new high school, a major fire ravaged the main building of Sainte-Anne's elementary school in April 2020. This historic 19th-century building was once the former Royal Montreal Golf Club before moving to L’Île-Bizard in the 1950s. The damages were considerable as you can see in the following video.
As the building was contaminated with asbestos, it was unthinkable to restore it. The management team decided to demolish it and build a new one. We therefore undertook the demolition of the building while taking care to avoid the spread of asbestos. A 40-foot-high enclosure was erected all around the building. The clean-up is now completed, and the site is ready for construction to begin.
THE CONSTRUCTION OF TWO NEW SCHOOLS
The members of the management team of Collège Sainte-Anne did not let themselves be overwhelmed by this terrible event. Instead, they decided to work hard and not only rebuild the burned building, but also to continue the project to build the new high school, which had been postponed for a year because of COVID. Both projects will be carried out in collaboration with the professionals using the BIM approach. The completion date for both buildings is scheduled for the summer of 2022.
Working in collaboration with visionary leaders is what has driven us day after day for 35 years! Together, we reinvent ways of doing things to become even more efficient.