Jack Diamond to design Montreal symphony hall
My counterpart at the Montreal Gazette, Arthur Kaptainis, has just written that the people who designed Toronto's new opera house, Diamond and Schmitt Architects, has been chosen to come up with the long, long, log-awaited new home from the Montreal Symphony Orchestra.
The contracts have not been signed yet, but the parameters are finally set for a projected 2011 completion date.
Kaptainis quotes chief architect Jack Diamond as saying that the hall will follow the classic shoebox model as Vienna's Musikverein, which is pretty much the same thinking that informed Toronto's opera house. Where the two are likely to differ most is in the details. The cost of the Montreal project is projected at $267 million, more than twice the budget for the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto.
Although Toronto's hall is a freestanding structure, the new home of the Montreal Symphony is being built on the downtown block occupied by the Place des Arts. Diamond's neo-Modernist aesthetic should blend nicely with the elegant 1960s Modernism of the existing three halls (as well as the post-Modern contemporary art museum designed in the late 1990s).