As fire continues to burn at historic Montreal monastery, worries mount about what has been lost

As fire continues to burn at historic Montreal monastery, worries mount about what has been lost

As massive plumes of smoke continued to rise from the Monastère du Bon-Pasteur in downtown Montreal on Friday, the way forward for the almost two-century-old constructing and what it holds inside are shrouded unsure. 

Provincial and municipal officers met Friday morning to evaluate the harm on the historic web site which caught fireplace Thursday.

Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante and Tradition Minister Mathieu Lacombe are holding a information convention at this hour.

The heritage constructing close to the nook of Sherbrooke and de Bullion streets now serves as a multi-service centre. 

It consists of a seniors’ residence, a housing co-operative, a daycare and condominiums. In lower than 10 days, the monastery was set to be the venue for the Concours Prix d’Europe, a week-long singing competitors.

WATCH | CBC’s Rowan Kennedy explains what’s left within the aftermath of the hearth:

What it appears to be like like on the scene of the Bon-Pasteur monastery fireplace

CBC’s Rowan Kennedy explains what’s left within the aftermath of Thursday’s harmful blaze.

For Taïka Baillargeon, the nearly-two-century outdated monastery isn’t only a image of the town’s previous.

It’s additionally a hit story — a shining instance of methods to breathe new life right into a historic establishment and switch it right into a vibrant gathering area for Montrealers.

“It was one of many first buildings that was revamped, restored, re-used with a imaginative and prescient of getting personal and public [usage],” mentioned Baillargeon, who’s the assistant coverage director at Heritage Montreal, a corporation that works to advertise and protect the town’s cultural architectural heritage.

“That is actually unhappy as a result of it nonetheless stands for instance of what we must always do by way of re-using our historic buildings.”

Nobody was significantly damage within the fireplace that broke out round 4:30 p.m. Thursday. It’s additionally not but clear how badly broken the monastery is, however the fireplace division mentioned they consider it is not going to be complete loss.

Setting Canada issued a particular air high quality assertion, warning of elevated air pollution in Montreal due to the smoke. 

Fire burns and smoke rises from heritage building
Firefighters reply to a five-alarm fireplace on the former Monastere du Bon Pasteur, a nineteenth century heritage constructing on Friday Might 26, 2023 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christinne Muschi (Christinne Muschi/The Canadian Press)

The monastery was in-built 1846. The freestone constructing has a central physique that’s crossed by three perpendicular wings. A presbytery was added in 1896. It was designated a heritage constructing in 1979. It was then acquired in 1984 by the Société immobilière du patrimoine architectural de Montréal (SIMPA).

Heritage Montreal is housed within the monastery. Baillargeon says the group’s archives could have been misplaced within the fireplace.

Baillargeon described the hearth as a “big, big catastrophe.”

“These methods, these supplies, we can not discover them once more. We can not rebuild a Bon-Pasteur as is. That’s essentially the most horrible a part of it,” she mentioned.

“These buildings confine in themselves a lot information, so many issues, a lot historical past and we won’t be able to have these again.”

WATCH | Greater than 100 fireplace fighters battle the blaze:

as fire continues to burn at historic montreal monastery worries mount about what has been lost 2

Hearth crews struggle flames at Montreal monastery

Watch crews work to extinguish the five-alarm fireplace on the historic Monastère du Bon-Pasteur in Montreal on Thursday.

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