Arcop Associates Maison Alcan project records

Arcop Associates Maison Alcan project records

Part of


  • Arcop Associates (archive creator)
  • Alcan Aluminum Limited (archive creator)
  • Arcop Associates (architectural firm)


Arcop Associates Maison Alcan project records

Dates of creation



  • archives

Level of archival description


Extent and Medium

  • Approximately 6000 drawings (including reprographic copies)
  • Approximately 915 photographic materials
  • 15 l.m. textual records
  • 2 models
  • 2 panels
  • 2 plaster mouldings
  • 1 book
  • 1 mullion extrusion

Scope and Content

The Arcop Associates Maison Alcan project records, 1979 – 1983, document Arcop’s (Architects in Co-Partnership) design and construction of Alcan’s Montreal head office, Maison Alcan.

Maison Alcan, located on 1188 Sherbrooke West, was part of a 40 million dollar restoration project which integrated historic buildings into a commercial construction. As Montreal’s first restoration project completed by a private corporation, Maison Alcan aimed at conserving the built heritage of the Golden Square Mile while also incorporating contemporary architectural designs into the newly converted office complex. Maison Alcan combined four Victorian mansions, the Atholstan, Beique, Holland, and the Klinkhoff Houses with the former Hotel Berkeley. A glass covered atrium joined these historic buildings with a seven storey aluminum pavilion, the Davis Building, at the back. This complex also incorporated the Salvation Army Tower and the former Emmanuel Congregational Church. Materials found in this project records relate to the restoration, renovation and construction of each of these buildings respectively.

These project records contain an extensive collection of architectural drawings, consisting of sketches, presentation drawings, boards of early design work, shop drawings and working drawings. Structural, mechanical, electrical, and site survey prints are also included in this collection. Textual records in this collection include administrative documents, correspondence, contracts, project files, project management meeting minutes, and rejected architectural proposals. The 915 photographs illustrate the various phases of Maison Alcan’s construction (1981-1983), including two binders of professional photographs taken after Maison Alcan’s completion.

The physical component of the archive consists of a model of the Davis Building’s side entrance, a 3-dimensional model of Maison Alcan and a monograph outlining the design principles that guided the construction of Maison Alcan's interior. These project records also contain original panels from the buildings prior to their renovation, original plaster mouldings, a sample of Maison Alcan’s window mullion extrusion and posters for the Architecture- Alcan Lectures that took place between 1982 and 1983.

Reference Number



These project records have not yet been arranged.

Administrative history

Affleck, Desbarats, Dimakopoulos, Lebensold, Michaud, Sise, commonly known as Arcop, is a Montreal-based architectural firm that was founded in 1955. This co-operative partnership was established after architects Raymond Tait Affleck (1922-1989), Guy Desbarats (1925-2003), Jean Michaud (1919-1925), Dimitri Dimakopoulos (1929-1995), Fred David Lebensold (1917-1985), and Hazen Edward Sise (1906-1974) won a national competition for their design of the Queen Elizabeth Theatre in Vancouver, British Columbia. In 1970, Affleck, Lebensold, and newly selected partner Arthur Boyd Nichol (1923-2014), re-established the firm and officially adopted the name Arcop.

Arcop worked in collaboration with Alcan and its former President David Culver to construct Maison Alcan. Ray Affleck, lead architect and partner-in-charge of the project, worked alongside architect Julia Gerosowitz who directed the restoration of the Victorian Houses and the Hotel Berkley. James A Woollven, owner of the Iron Cat in Westmount, supplied the interior of the complex with wallpapers, fabrics, and other furnishings.

In 1984, Arcop and Alcan were awarded the annual prix d’excellence de l’Ordre des architectes du Quebec for the construction of Maison Alcan. In 1984, Arcop and Alcan were presented with the Credit Foncier award for best building preservation project in Canada; they shared a $20 000 prize.

Notable Montreal projects completed by Arcop include Lac Des Castors Pavillon (1958), Place Bonaventure’s Salle Wilfred-Pelletier (1964), Place Ville Marie (1965), Place Bonaventure (1967), Theme Pavillons – Expo 67 (1967), Place Air Canada (1983), Les Cours Mont-Royal (1989), The Montreal World Trade Centre (1992), and The Montreal Casino (1993).

Other noteworthy projects carried out by Arcop include the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Ontario (1969); the Provincial Government Building in Charlottetown, PEI (1969); Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia (1971); the Al-Omma Mosque in Tripoli, Libya (1982); the Museum of Science and Natural History of Kuwait, Kuwait (1996); the Government buildings in Iqaluit, Arviat, Kugluktuk, Nunavut (1999); and the Birla Building, New Dehli, India (1999).

Conditions governing access

  • Open for use by qualified researchers. Access by appointment only.

Conditions governing reproduction

  • For copyright information or permission to reproduce material from the project records, please contact the CCA (reproductions@cca.qc.ca).

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

  • Gift of Arcop and Alcan on October 28, 1985.

Custodial history

Prior to the donation of the project records to the Canadian Centre for Architecture on October 28, 1985, the Arcop Associates Maison Alcan project records were originally held by two separate parties: ARCOP and Alcan respectively. These project records were, therefore, two separate donations all of which pertain to the restoration and construction of Maison Alcan.

Archivist's note

  • These project records have not yet been arranged. A fonds level description was created by Patricia Di Palma on October 26, 2016.


Montréal Island of Montréal Québec Canada

Credit line

When citing the collection as a whole, use the following citation:
Arcop Associates Maison Alcan project records
Collection Centre Canadien d'Architecture/
Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal
When citing specific collection material, please refer to the object’s specific credit line.

Language of material

English , French


Sign up to get news from us

Email address
First name
Last name
By signing up you agree to receive our newsletter and communications about CCA activities. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, consult our privacy policy or contact us.

Thank you for signing up. You'll begin to receive emails from us shortly.

We’re not able to update your preferences at the moment. Please try again later.

You’ve already subscribed with this email address. If you’d like to subscribe with another, please try again.

This email was permanently deleted from our database. If you’d like to resubscribe with this email, please contact us

Please complete the form below to buy:
[Title of the book, authors]
ISBN: [ISBN of the book]
Price [Price of book]

First name
Last name
Address (line 1)
Address (line 2) (optional)
Postal code
Email address
Phone (day) (optional)

Thank you for placing an order. We will contact you shortly.

We’re not able to process your request at the moment. Please try again later.

Folder ()

Your folder is empty.

Please complete this form to make a request for consultation. A copy of this list will also be forwarded to you.

Your contact information
First name:
Last name:
Phone number:
Notes (optional):
We will contact you to set up an appointment. Please keep in mind that your consultation date will be based on the type of material you wish to study. To prepare your visit, we'll need:
  • — At least 2 weeks for primary sources (prints and drawings, photographs, archival documents, etc.)
  • — At least 48 hours for secondary sources (books, periodicals, vertical files, etc.)