A somewhat atypical shape, beige brick, contemporary openings that reveal… nothing! What could be hiding behind the facade of this house on rue Berri, located a few steps from the Henri-Bourassa metro station? To find out, you have to enter it. Afterwards, you have to “go backwards”, as a bus driver would say.
To tell the truth, you don’t have to go very far in this house in Ahuntsic to be surprised. As soon as you enter, you have the impression of being a little outside. This is due to the rear facade which is glazed from the ground to the roof. Natural light enters in abundance in the living rooms on the ground floor, as well as in the quarters of the masters of the house which occupies the entire floor. It suggests that even when the weather isn’t nice outside, it’s nice inside. “You come in here, everything is clear, even in winter,” opines Pierre Roger, co-owner with his friend Anne. Under their stewardship, the property built in 1910 was 100 years younger.
In fact, what Pierre and Anne bought in 1995 was a small “shoebox” type house. Although dated with its plaster, its divisions and its multiple layers of wallpaper, it had seduced them by its solidity and its backyard which gave the impression of being in the countryside, while being close to the metro and services. “We said to ourselves: ‘we’re going to live in it for a while, to see what we’re going to do,'” summarizes Anne.
The reflection lasted seven years, during which the two lovers of modern architecture thought a lot. They wanted to expand, that was clear, but how? As it was impossible to do it in width, they absolutely had to do it from the bottom or from the top.
Without children and considering that they did not see themselves “living in a basement”, they opted for the addition of a floor. They wanted light, open areas, a slightly industrial style… They called on architect Martin Brière to refine their project. Advantageously known for his institutional and commercial achievements, the latter came to see and embarked on the adventure. “He arrived with mind-blowing sketches,” Pierre recalls admiringly.
A good architect knows the laws of physics as well as City regulations and has plenty of tricks to do things the neophyte wouldn’t have thought of. By any measure, the owners have nothing but good words for Martin Brière, who brought their project to life and masterfully navigated the obstacles that inevitably arise during major renovations. They feel the same satisfaction for the contractor, who carried out the work. “A great contractor recommended by the architect. Reliable people with high quality subcontractors,” Pierre points out. In 2007, this original house transformed into an original was listed in a book by the School of Architecture at Laval University. The publication featured 100 contemporary houses in Quebec.
Although the house is located in a fairly busy street, there is a pleasant calm inside. This is largely due to the quality of the doors and windows, the owners believe. They chose the Quebec brand Alumilex, which blends in perfectly with modern architecture. Note that the patio doors that open onto the rear terrace can open in a standard or accordion fashion. This makes it possible to eliminate the boundary between inside and outside when desired.
You reach the first floor by a metal staircase. It is here, in this large space, that the master bedroom and its outbuildings are located, including a bathroom and a large walk-in closet. Again, everything is clear due to the abundant glazing, but also some walls that stop before touching the ceiling. Let the light flow! When it’s time to go to sleep, we pull the curtain for privacy. Thank you good night !
This house has brought a lot of happiness to both owners. The proximity to services, the river and the parks contributed to the pleasure. Having reached another stage in their life, they decided to put it up for sale so that new owners could benefit from it.
949 000 $
6, including 2 full bathrooms
2500 pi2 (232,30 m2)
785 600 $
Danielle Mansour and Jannie Pouliot (Christine Gauthier Real Estate Agency)