Rendering showing view of elevated station from freeway.
Rendering showing view of elevated station from freeway.

Réseau Express Métropolitain (REM)

Montréal, Québec
Re-writing the Story of Montréal’s Future

The largest public transportation infrastructure project for the metropolitan area since 1966, the REM project is re-writing the story of Montréal’s future through transit. At 27 stations across 67 kilometers, it will be one of the largest automated transportation systems in the world. Equally impressive, the project has broad aspirations related to culture, identity, and sustainability. So how do you design a project of such scale and significance?

You start with a clear concept. Working with joint venture partners Lemay and Bisson Fortin, we developed a system-wide design that captures the speed of trains and rhythm of the passing landscape to create a new identity for the line and the city. We developed a consistent set of design details and modular components that will ensure a built identity and a sense of familiarity for passengers across the line. Each of these components came together in a variety of ways to address the unique topography of each station’s context. A colour and material palette reflecting local landscapes was also developed to provide variety across stations and express the diversity across each neighbourhood this transformative line passes through.

Graphic showing how the movement of train travel translates to a graphic concept.
Diagram showing the how the concept of speed and travel is represented on the stations.
The Speed of Life

Horizontal lines representing the speed of travel are depicted on the facades of the platform volumes to manifest the movement of trains. The rhythmic vertical lines, expressed on plazas and the facades of vertical circulation volumes that connect stations to communities, represent the kinetic succession of scenery. Together, this system-wide design captures the speed of trains and rhythm of passing landscape to create identity.

Rendering showing Kirkland station.
The result of a competitive P3 bid process, REM will connect to, and build upon, the legacy of Montreal’s beloved underground metro stations, doubling the reach of the existing transit system and connecting the broader extents of the city where only car travel was previously possible.
Rendering showing interior of an underground station with lots of natural light.
Rendering showing Panama station.
27 stations on Montreal’s new 67 kilometer line share a design identity focused on speed, lightness and transparency.
Diagram showing station components and various station types.
One System, Infinite Compositions

We parceled key spaces within each station into four distinct volumes: entry, concourse, circulation, and platform. Once identified, the volumes were designed as a kit of parts to simplify programming and construction across all station types and to establish a common, line-wide identity. This clear system of components allowed our team to configure a large array of station types, whether elevated, burmed, at grade, trenched, or underground.

Interior rendering of station showing circulation and fare gates.
Rendering of at grade station typology in winter.

Project Team

People
D’Arcy Arthurs
People
Duff Balmer
People
Jeff Doble
People
Paul Kulig