Swanky Food Hall With Garden Comes to Montreal
There’s about to be a major project in the works for the Place Ville Marie (PVM) complex in downtown Montreal. It was announced recently that a 35,000 square foot food hall would be the new centrepieceof the mixed-use space on McGill College Avenue and Cathcart Street.
The food hall plans to incorporate up to 15 businesses. It’ll have everything from formal bistros and bar options to fast-casual counters for lunch crowds. The hall is set to open sometime in 2019.
The hall will be Named Le Cathcart Restaurants et Biergartenand will be taking the place of the previous Place Ville-Marie food court, which is closed now. It is much more likely to be adestinationcenter than the previous food court. Le Cathcart will be built and operated by architecture firms Sid Lee and Menkes ShoonerDagenaisLetourneaux, and restaurant group A5 Hospitality (Kampai Garden, Jatoba, and Mayfair). It’s also partnered with Chef Antonio Park (Park, Lavanderia).
The food hall will be an excellent makeover for space – which has pretty much been relegated to a shopping mall in the past. It also appears that the hall will be elevated in comparison to the former dining options in the building.
The hall will be close to the Cathcart Street entrance to PVM. Entrances from McGill College and Cathcart will also be opened, while the current entrances to the building’s underground parking lot will be moved to a different location. It will also include a 50 by 150-foot glass ceiling looking out to the plaza above.
“We want to reinvent the offerings, [moving] from a food court towards more of a food hall-slash-beer garden…something that has the ability to start early in the day [and run] through to late at night,” explains Jean Pelland, a partner at Sid Lee Architecture.
The hall will be divided into three different sections. One section will be geared towards faster, casual options such as counters and kiosk that may cater to the lunch crowd from the PVM office building above. Although the tenants are yet to be confirmed. Alexandre Besnard of A5 tells Eater that chains and franchises won’t be on the menu.
“We want the offer to be unique — possibly getting local establishments, pulling from [established restaurants in] different neighbourhoods, a sampling of Montreal.”
A bar and a café will be at the center while the third section will feature slightly more formal dining options; an izakaya and a deli have been passed around as possible ideas. A5 Hospitality will be in charge of running some of the businesses.
The change to the hall will be a complete 180 from what it once was; a vital part of the décor will be greenery, the center section will have a garden surrounding it, and a wooden deck as the centrepiece.
This type of fancy hall is enjoying quite the moment of popularity elsewhere in North America. Montreal has only seen one other establishment like this, the Marché Artisans, at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth Hotel – although the hotel runs most of it, unlike Le Cathcart, which will have a more varied vendor.