Track 5: CANADA 150 – INDIGENOUS HERITAGE, DIVERSITY, and NEW DIRECTIONS / Volet 5: Canada 150 – Patrimoine autochtone, diversité et nouvelles orientations

Indigenizing Montreal: Re-Occupying Montreal

Saturday, October 14
10:45 AM - 12:15 PM

Native Montréal, is a non-profit organization that promotes and supports Indigenous people living in Montreal. Its mission is to contribute to the holistic health, cultural strength and success of Indigenous families, individuals and communities in Montreal.

Native Montreal submitted the project Indigenize Montreal to the Société des célébrations du 375e so it could be part of the official program celebrating Montreal’s 375th .This was later followed by an offer from The World Design Summit, to be held in Montreal the fall of 2017, to exhibit within its venue, the various projects that will be developed for Indigenize Montreal’s.

This project although it is not about preserving heritage sites per se, is just as important if not more so. It is an attempt to weave the presence of indigenous people back into the fabric of urban Montreal, where they belong and should always have been. In a way it is rejigging the heritage fabric to make room for those whose heritage was obliterated. This is all in the spirit of Truth and Reconciliation
This raises a number of questions, the first being what is indigenization ? An Indigenized Montréal must be an accessible, lived experience, rooted in historical and contemporary Indigenous teachings and knowledge. The Indigenized locations must be connected by a network of key spaces guaranteeing a sense of belonging within the Indigenous community across the urban landscape of Montreal.

The Principles: Key Objectives
The Indigenous world-view must be translated into overarching philosophical and design principles. The key objectives of the principles is to enhance the protection, reinstatement and development of Indigenous cultural landscapes enabling all of the First Nations, Inuit and Métis to connect to and deepen their ‘ sense of place ’. The Principles seek to foster and guide culturally appropriate designs that enhance Indigenous peoples’ appreciation of the natural landscape and the built environment.

The Principles: Applications
To be properly applied, the principles must be adapted. The principles are intended as a strategic foundation for Indigenous people to adapt, customize and further develop in response to local context.
The principles also provide other stakeholders and the design community with a clearer picture as to how Indigenous people and Nations are likely to view, value and wish to participate in the design and development of the built environment within their ancestral territory or contemporary living space.
The use of the principles is predicated on the development of long term relationships based on respect being developed between Indigenous people, mandated design professionals and different levels of governance. The resulting relationships between these groups provide opportunities to unlock a rich design potential.

Learning Objectives:



Alain Fournier Architect is a founding partner of EVOQ Architecture
He has worked for over thirty years with the Inuit and First Nations. He has worked in the Canadian Arctic’s territories of Nunavik, Nunavut and Nunatsiavut and has also worked with the Cree of Eyou Istchee, the Mi'gmaq, the Maliseet, the Innu and the Kanien’kehá:ka.
Mr. Fournier regularly gives lectures to his architectural peers in Canada and abroad on the subject of designing architectural projects with the Inuit and First Nations. He has facilitated roundtables for the Indigenous Heritage Circle as well as the Treaty 8 Tribal Association in BC.


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Philippe Tsaronsere Meilleur

Executive Director

As a metis, Mr. Meilleur grew up on the edge of the Mohawk territory of Kanasatake.

Prior to joining Native Montreal, Mr. Meilleur worked as team leader with Équiterre, information Officer for Feu Vert and as Director of the Centre for Aboriginal Community Development in Montreal. Philippe’s mission is to defend the interest of minorities, those of Indigenous people in particular, a rapidly growing population in Montreal and in Canada.


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Senior Associate, Architect
EVOQ Architecture Inc.

Dima Cook has extensive experience in heritage conservation, construction and project management. She is recognized for her ability to manage large, complex projects from early design to contract administration. As a Senior Associate of EVOQ Architecture (FGMDA), Dima is responsible for directing the firm’s Toronto office. A graduate of the McGill School of Architecture, she is LEED AP accredited and serves as the firm’s sustainability advisor. She has served as the co-chair of the APT Sustainable Preservation Sub-Committee on Climate Change. In 2014, Dima was appointed to the City of Toronto Design Review Panel as its Heritage Representative.


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Indigenizing Montreal: Re-Occupying Montreal

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