an opening for histoire

There are many Canadian Pacific properties that thread clear across Montreal, creating a consistent stretch of something rural in flavour. These lots are far from vacant, and teem with life of all kinds. From weeds to wasteland, each patch of earth is rich and streaming with culture and memory.

The following passages are about the history of this piece of land in the Mile End district of the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough in Montréal. The lot number of the field is 2334609 and its area measures 12,273 square metres. The field is located south of the train tracks below Rosemont metro, facing the Carmelite’s residence on Henri-Julien street. It belonged to the Canadian Pacific Railway company for decades up until 2009, when the city acquired it as part of their nine million dollar development plan to revitalize the neighbourhood. It is labelled a vacant lot, and is commercially zoned. This field and its story are one of many that connect people to place. It is a story that documents the changes that have happened here.

Emily Rose Michaud

Emily Rose Michaud is an artist and activist working at the intersections of community development, civic participation, and urban ecology. In recent years, her experimental, participatory, and socially driven approach has resulted in a series of performances incorporating living ‘sproutfits’, a guerilla gardener’s ensemble, an electronic book designed to be reproduced and remixed by others, and the Roerich Garden Project, a three-year land art project in a post-industrial railyard turned urban meadow.

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