Peace Park (Montreal)

Peace Park or Place de la Paix is an urban square in Montreal. Peace Park is the colloquial name for Place de la Paix, which directly translates to “Place of Peace”. Often, even in French newspapers, Place de la Paix is referred to as “Parc de la Paix”.[1] It is on Saint-Laurent Boulevard and, as such, it follows different by-laws than parks. For example, Peace park is open to the public at all times, unlike parks with visiting hours.

History

The decision to build Peace Park came during Jean Doré’s administration after he helped Montreal become a Nuclear Free Zone in 1986. With Montréal’s new commitment to peace the mayor Jean Doré announced in 1989[2] that he would build a place of peace in remembrance of the tragedies of nuclear warfare, located on Saint-Laurent Boulevard in front of the Monument-National and the Montreal Pool Room.

The park was designed by Robert Desjardins and was inaugurated on the 20th of November 1994.[3] It is largely constructed of granite with grass around granite tiles in the middle, and with trees contouring the park. The park originally had green metal benches under the trees that surrounded the park, but they were removed in 2005 to help with the gentrification of the area. Montreal’s city officials are trying to "clean up" Peace Park, meaning that they want to decrease the amount of alcoholics, homeless, drugs, prostitutes, and skateboarders who are there due to its location at the center of the red light district in the heart of Montreal.

Skateboarding

Peace Park has appeared in many skateboard videos, magazine, and books because of its design, which embodies long, high, and wide granite ledges, and stairs. The layout allows for good flow when rolling around the park. Being centrally located in the city of Montreal the park also serves as a meeting place for many skateboarders.[4]

Skateboarding is not legal in the park; city by-laws are enforced with hefty tickets.[5] In 2004 the Quartier des Arts et Spectacles, but the proposal was refused by the city. Despite skateboarding being against the law, the parks reputation continues to grow.

Adding to the skateboard presence in the park Temple Skate Supply moved their store to 1201 St-Dominique in 2007, which is across the street from Peace Park.

Documentary

In 2001 local skateboarder David Bouthillier began filming the parks activities. After accumulating extensive footage over time, the park’s history, natives, and its vibrant visitors inspired him to release a narrated feature length documentary on the park.

The documentary titled MQC production in 2010.

The video will convey to its audience the history, which will include the skateboard and graffiti aspects, the role the park plays as an urban public space in Montreal’s heritage, and to create awareness about the group of people that occupy Peace Park because they represent a part of Montreal's society that has important roots in its history. However, they have often been unappreciated and perceived as un-deserving of a place in our society by the average citizen. The documentary will help elucidate the situation at Peace Park to all groups involved to better understand their “locals,” who are constantly being targeted and having their rights violated, and find ways of addressing the needs everyone who interacts with the park.

Events

Represent 2004 - MC's, DJ's, Breakdance, Grattiti

Represent 2005 - MC's, DJ's, Breakdance, Grattiti et Skateboard

Peace Pressure 2006 -Best Trick Skateboard Contest

Under Pressure 2008 - International Graffiti Convention

Under Pressure 2009 - International Graffiti Convention

Festival de la Rue 2009

Access

References

External links

  • Peace Park / Place de la Paix
  • Skatespotter
  • Concordia Link
  • Murphy, B. (2 June 2005). "Sizzling Summer: Montreal skate parks", Montreal: Hour.

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