Montreal, Quebec – Ivanhoé Cambridge announced today the resumption of construction on the Maison Manuvie office tower project at 900 de Maisonneuve West in Montreal. This decision was taken in the wake of the approval of the results by the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications du Québec of the results of the “Assessment of Archeological Potential” study conducted by an archeological specialist firm mandated by Ivanhoé Cambridge.
In February 2015, Ivanhoé Cambridge voluntarily suspended preliminary excavation work for the Maison Manuvie, a major office building project located downtown Montreal. This decision was taken in consideration of some concerns expressed by citizens about the possible archeological potential of the site at 900 de Maisonneuve West.
The decision to suspend the work was taken despite the fact that Ivanhoé Cambridge held all the necessary permits and approvals for construction of the building. According to Ministère de la Culture et des Communications archeological maps, the 900 de Maisonneuve West site is in fact located outside any designated archeological zone.
As is the case with all of its projects, Ivanhoé Cambridge took a careful and responsible approach in order to pay special attention to the archeological concerns that were raised.
Archéotec inc., an expert firm specializing in archeology, was then hired by Ivanhoé Cambridge to carry out an “Assessment of Archeological Potential” study, in agreement with the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications. All applicable research protocols were followed.
The study report’s conclusion confirms the inexistence of archeological potential:
Based on the information collected and presented in this report, it appears that the surface soils have been stripped during the various episodes of building construction and street and public infrastructure development in the 19th and 20th centuries. In particular, the surface soils that could conceal archaeological elements connected to site BjFj-01 are clearly not there.
The data collected from the drilling indicates that excavations throughout the study area related to the construction of various buildings were so deep that no archaeological elements remain.
Therefore, we do not recommend any further archeological work.
— Archéotec inc.
In a spirit of transparency, Ivanhoé Cambridge also had the Archéotec Inc. report translated and posted it in its entirety to its website:
Ivanhoé Cambridge wishes to thank the various stakeholders involved in this matter.
The Maison Manuvie project
Co-owned by Manulife and Ivanhoé Cambridge, Maison Manuvie will be 27 storeys high with about 486,500 ft2 (45,200 m2) of space, more than 260,000 ft2 (24,000 m2) of which will be occupied by Manulife employees.
Designed by the Montreal architectural firm Menkès Shooner Dagenais Letourneux, the class AAA building features timeless architecture and high efficiency with a focus on sustainable development.
Designed to meet the standards for LEED® CS (Core and Shell) Gold certification, Maison Manuvie will offer a working environment with considerable layout flexibility, maximum brightness and opportunities to create open and collaborative workspaces.
With a rest area, a conference centre, an outdoor terrace located on the 8th floor, complete facilities to accommodate bicycles and more than 360 above-ground parking spaces, Maison Manuvie will feature alternative, new-generation workspace strategies.
Construction is scheduled to be completed on the Maison Manuvie project in the third quarter of 2017.