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Stairs and balconies

Perhaps the two most distinctive features of Montreal’s low-rise architectural landscape are (1) lots of exterior stairs and (2) lots of balconies. (Their density is, of course, also noteworthy, particularly in a North American context.)

The exterior stairs are somewhat curious to outsiders given all the snow the city gets. But it’s maybe a good case study and follow-up to yesterday’s post about 1925 Victoria Park Road and its proposed exterior corridors.

As for the second feature, the Globe and Mail recently published this wonderful little ode to the Montreal balcony. It is a great reminder that, when designed well, people really do love balconies and exterior spaces.

This is an ongoing debate in the world of multi-family development, and the outcomes often vary by city and sometimes by housing tenure. But at the end of the day, I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t appreciate getting outside in the summer.

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