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Visiting Pointe Saint-Charles, Montreal, Quebec: A Skyline Dominated by the Twin Towers of the Église Saint-Charles

Updated on May 8, 2020
Flag of Quebec
Flag of Quebec | Source
The église Saint-Charles is situated at 2115, rue Centre, Montréal, in the Pointe Saint-Charles neighbourhood
The église Saint-Charles is situated at 2115, rue Centre, Montréal, in the Pointe Saint-Charles neighbourhood | Source

A very conspicuous piece of architectural heritage

[NB: Among the many notable buildings which are the subject of these hubpages, these may include religious buildings, described as churches, etc.; these descriptions centre on the buildings' architectural and historical interest. This visit occurred some years ago.]

The Point Saint-Charles neighbourhood of Montreal, Quebec has a skyline dominated by the Église Saint-Charles.

The building dates from 1914. This imposing structure replaced a previous 'Église Saint-Charles' which was destroyed by fire.

Its architects were Ludger Lemieux (1) and Joseph-Honoré Macduff.

The building's crowning features — or, at least, its most conspicuous ones — are the twin towers which, even a century after the structure was inaugurated, rise far above the surrounding neighbourhood. Autoroute 10 - 15 passes by not far from the building; and in the Pointe Saint-Charles district — close to the Pont Samuel de Champlain / Samuel de Champlain Bridge across the Saint-Laurent / Saint Lawrence — the 10 - 15 rises to an elevated section, from which the twin towers of the Église Saint-Charles still appear to loom high. The towers are each topped by small cupolas.

The structure is executed in stone. Other features include a profusion of Syrian (or Romanesque) arching.

The Église Saint-Charles is thus a distinguished contribution to the many items of ecclesiastical architectural heritage which Montreal possesses.

The Pointe Saint-Charles neighbourhood was known from the 19th century for its sizable Irish population; the Église Saint-Charles, however, has mainly been used by French Canadian residents. A nearby church building was traditionally preferred by many of the neighbourhood's Irish population.

Long noted for many social problems, the Pointe Saint-Charles neighbourhood has in recent years undergone urban development renewal, with many condominiums erected, conveniently located for residents working in Downtown Montreal.

The Pointe Saint-Charles neighbourhood, being located near to a main travel route across the Saint-Laurent / Saint Lawrence, is thus an area of Montreal through which — rather than to which — many visitors travel. This in some ways is rather a pity, because the Église Saint-Charles undoubtedly exudes great architectural character as among the neighbourhood's most distinguished of buildings.

The Église Saint-Charles is situated at 2115, rue Centre, Montreal, Quebec.

May 4, 2020


(1) The nearby Marché Atwater / Atwater Market was also designed by Architect Lemieux.

Some sourcing: Wikipedia

See from rue Centre, the Église Saint-Charles
See from rue Centre, the Église Saint-Charles | Source

Also worth seeing

The architectural and cultural attractions of Montreal are too numerous to mention here, but of special note, among many others, are the domed Bonsecours Market (Marché Bonsecours), dating from 1847, which was a venue used to house the Parliament of United Canada, prior to Confederation. The Notre-Dame Basilica (Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal) was built mainly between 1824 and 1829; many Montrealers attend annual performances of Handel's 'Messiah' there. The Canal de Lachine / Lachine Canal is a Lieu historique national du Canada / National Historic Site. The Olympic Stadium (Stade Olympique) in the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district, used for the 1976 Olympics, has the the world's tallest inclined tower, at 175 metres.

Mont-Tremblant (distance: 133 kilometres), in the Laurentian Mountains (Laurentides) is ideal for scenic excursions, golf and skiing; its boutiques attract many shoppers.


How to get there: Air Canada flies to Montreal (Aéroport international Pierre-Elliott-Trudeau de Montréal) from Toronto-Pearson, and from New York-Newark and New York-La Guardia, with wide connections. A number of car rental companies offer service at Montreal-Trudeau airport. VIA Rail maintains regular services with Toronto and Windsor. Métro Charlevoix is the nearest Métro station to 2115, rue Centre. You are advised to check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

Map location of Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Map location of Montreal, Quebec, Canada | Source

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