Montreal’s newest tower will put Indigenous influences front and center (literally)

Ode to Ode

Montreal’s newest tower will put Indigenous influences front and center (literally)

Rising in Old Montreal, a neighorhood rife with historic buidings dating back to the 17th century, the Odea Montreal will give residents plenty of pool and terrace space via the podium topper and tower’s roof. (Courtesy Cogir Real Estate/Provided by v2com)

The historic waterfront of Old Montreal is set to receive a new addition that wears its nautical influences on its sleeve.

On November 29, Canadian property management company and developer Cogir Real Estate pulled back the curtain on plans for (and broke ground on) the Odea Montreal, a residential tower being built in partnership with CREECO. The Cree Regional Economic Enterprises Company (CREECO) is owned by the Cree Nation Government and works to invest in developments that better the lives of the Cree Nation across Quebec.

A tower with prominent prow and a canoe-shaped carving
The 25-story tower will contain a mix of condo units and apartments (Courtesy Cogir Real Estate/Provided by v2com)

“I am proud to see my nation’s contribution to the Montreal skyline with an innovative and forward-thinking project that will not only showcase the history of the Cree nation, but more importantly will also create space for indigenous organizations and entities,” said Mandy Gull, Grand Chief of the Cree Nation Government, in the project announcement. “The Odea Montreal project is the first of its kind and will be an economic driving force with endless opportunities for additional investment.”

A 25-story tower, the mixed-use Odea Montreal will, once completed in 2024, provide 263 rental apartments and 171 condo units for purchase. A sky lounge, two rooftop pools, common areas, and an arts space run by Montreal’s interdisciplinary art complex Fonderie Darling are also planned.

A vacant construction lot
The lot at the corner of Robert-Bourassa Boulevard and Ottawa Street as it stands today. (Courtesy Cogir Real Estate/Provided by v2com)

CREECO and Cogir have tapped Lemay, which has offices in Montreal, Toronto, New York, Calgary, Quebec City, and Edmonton, and Indigenous architect Douglas Cardinal for the tower’s design. Appropriately, both the name of the project itself and the shape reference Cree culture; ode means canoe in Cree, the massing of the building nods to a nautical heritage as the tower sharply rises to a “prow” at the corner of Robert-Bourassa Boulevard and Ottawa Street above the main entrance. Below that pinnacle, the impression of a canoe, ribbed by recessed balconies, has been carved away from the corner, helping to both funnel visitors to the main entrance and further reinforcing the ode part of the Odea name. Lemay and Cardinal have also splashed the facade with alternating windows and balconies to add variety and break up any grid-induced monotony.

A rooftop pool at the odea montreal with bridge in the background
The rooftop pool and lounge, one of two (Courtesy Cogir Real Estate/Provided by v2com)

The Odea Montreal will begin taking unit reservations in 2022, but in the meantime, you can follow the construction live via webcam on the project’s website.