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Montreal’s Olympic Stadium accepting pitches for roof designs

The architect's original vision for the structure included a massive concrete dome with a retractable roof, held up by cables suspended from the world’s largest inclined tower, at 165 metres high. Parc olympique de Montréal/Facebook

The Olympic Stadium’s renovation board announced Tuesday it was opening the floor for companies to pitch designs for the stadium’s much-discussed roof, with one condition — that the roof let in natural light.

The board is however not requiring that the roof open, like the stadium’s late architect, Roger Taillibert, had envisioned.

READ MORE: Roger Taillibert, designer of Montreal’s Olympic Stadium, dead at 93

In the qualifying call, the Régie des installations olympiques (RIO) said it was open to having a roof that partially opens to host open-air events, but said they need to be presented with a reasonable cost and the technical feasibility of a retractable roof.

The board’s call invited interested firms to submit applications that include roof design, construction and maintenance plans. No information on the project’s budget was announced.

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The board presented other project requirements, including respecting the stadium’s design aesthetic. This means that no steel structures to uphold the roof will be allowed, as the roof’s design has to respect Taillibert’s original vision.

READ MORE: Desjardins to move into Montreal Olympic Stadium tower

Taillibert, the French architect who designed the stadium to host the 1976 Montreal Olympics, passed away on Oct. 3 at the age of 93. His vision for the structure included a massive concrete dome with a retractable roof, held up by cables suspended from the world’s largest inclined tower, at 165 metres high.

The board is however aiming for a flatter roof to minimize wind exposure.

The RIO is requiring the roof’s design include translucent sections in order to let in natural light.

Interested firms have until Jan. 29, 2020, to present their pitches, and the final candidates will be announced in March. The board is set to present the plan to the Quebec government in the summer of 2020 and the project will be presented to the public in 2021.

–With files from The Canadian Press

READ MORE: Comaneci, darling of ’76 Olympics, revisits Montreal

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