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The Hospital Architecture Database
Entries in the Hospital Architecture in Montreal Online Resource are designed to provide a concise, image oriented architectural profile of the hospitals of Montreal. The scope of this resource is defined geographically by the Island of Montreal and chronologically by the founding of the city and of Montreal’s first hospital, L’Hotel-Dieu, in 1644. Institutionally, the survey scope is defined by the definition of a hospital as an ‘establishment for the provision of professional medical treatment’. Given the presence of numerous long-term care, mental health institutions, hospices, and other affiliated institutions on the Island of Montreal, this distinction is not always entirely clear. This is especially true considering the transition of numerous hospitals into long term care facilities, asylums into hospitals, and numerous other potential combinations. The transition of the Protestant Insane Asylum to the Douglas Hospital and the origins of Saint Mary’s Hospital at the Shaughnessy House are but two examples. In this respect, the database is designed to clearly link the hospital as an institution to the buildings in which it provided health care, as a historical progression.

Each hospital record is presented in a three layered manner comprised of general, architectural, and institutional profiles. Complete descriptions of the fields provided in each profile are available in this listing . Also provided is a full text window in which the three individual profiles are compiled in simple text format for easy printing by the user. The bibliography provided for each hospital record lists the resources used in its compilation.

Given the basic architectural focus of the database, the vast majority of hospital profiles are accompanied by images of the hospital buildings. These are divided into three categories: contemporary photographs taken in the summer of 2000, historical photographs, and architectural drawings. In total, the database features over one thousand hospital images.

Finally, each hospital can be located on a digital map of Montreal which can be viewed at multiple levels from the entire Island of Montreal, to the individual neighbourhood in which a particular hospital is situated. This map can also be used as a search engine to locate hospitals in a given area, and features a chronological function which allows the user to view hospital development in Montreal as it has occurred over the past three and a half centuries.

The Royal Victoria Hospital Case Study
The strong association of the Royal Victoria Hospital to McGill University, coupled with its advanced architectural design and high historical value logically suggested it as a case study for this project. The Royal Victoria case study is a prototype analysis of a major Montreal hospital in terms of its architectural development. The case study is specifically oriented at publishing all available images of the hospital buildings, specifically those under the curatorship of the McGill Archives which have never before been seen by the public. Over two hundred of these historic photographs are presented in the case study image albums. Additionally, contributions from the planning department of the Royal Victoria Hospital have made possible the presentation of original drawings by H. Saxon Snell during the 1890’s which have also never been viewed publicly. The case study is also comprised of descriptions of the Royal Victoria buildings, a detailed construction chronology, and an interview with Mr. Gilles Larose, one of the only living architects to have designed a building at the Royal Victoria.
G E N E R A L    I N F O R M A T I O N                 Resume text
Hospital Name The current, original and previous names of hospitals, historic and operating currently.
Street Address The hospitals final or current street address as well as previous addresses of the hospital.
MUC District The municipality and neighborhood in which the hospital resides.
Architect The architect of the original design.
Firm The architectural firm responsible for the original design.
Construction Dates All available dates regarding the construction and incorporation of the hospital including: groundbreaking, completion, original founding and demolition.
Renovations A chronology of renovations which have been undertaken on the hospital building.
I N S T I T U T I O N A L     I N F O R M A T I O N                 Resume text
Organizing Institution The body or organization responsible for operating the hospital. For example: The McGill University Health Centre
Case Type A chronology of types of care offered by the hospital.
Patient Capacity Capacity in number of beds, in chronological order. Example: 200 beds in 1950, 350 beds in 1973.
A R C H I T E C T U R A L  /  C O N S T R U C T I O N                 Resume text
Footprint The shape of the hospital building on it’s site. Example: a double-H shaped design.
Number of Floors The number of floors in the different wings of each hospital.
Materials Used A basic description of the materials used in the construction of the building.
General Notes Information pertaining to the architectural, institutional and historical significance of the building.
Bibliography A list of available text resources pertaining specifically to the hospital