Project 365 – Day 165: Aire Libres in the Gay Village
June 13 2012
Following yesterday’s purple day, today I headed down to the Gay Village to check out the annual summer Aire Libres event along rue Sainte Catherine.
Since 2008, rue Sainte Catherine is closed to cars from Berri through to Papineau during the summer months with pedestrians, terraces, street sales and art exhibits taking the place of cars. Following on from the great reception received last year, Les Boules Roses make a return.
200,000 pink resin balls are strung across the 1 kilometer stretch of Sainte-Catherine from St-Hubert to Papineau. The massive installation was created by landscape architect Claude Cormier (also responsible for designing many other Montreal spaces, including among others; Dorchester Square, Clock Tower Beach, and Place D’Armes).
Not sure if this is new for this year, but at each end of the closed section of Sainte Catherine street are staircases providing a view above the suspended pink balls.
The Montreal Gay Village (referred to locally as Le Village) is the largest in North America, stretching from St-Hubert Street to De Lorimier Street on Saint Catherine Street, and between Sherbrooke Street and René-Lévesque Boulevard on Amherst Street. Having received funding over recent years from all 3 levels of government, Le Village is becoming a thriving neighborhood and has witnessed gentrification of the areas working class origin.
In recognition of being in the heart of Le Village, the Beaudry metro station facade pillars were painted in the Gay and Lesbian Pride rainbow colors when the station was renovated in 1999/2000.
On the way through Place des Festivals where the Francofolies festival is currently running, I found the Quebec singer Charlebois doing his sound test for tonights show, so I grabbed a quick shot as I wasn’t planning on going to the concert.
To view images in gallery format, simply click on one of the images below.
Thanks for stopping by. Until next time.