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First Place: Avril - Place de la Cité

Conversion: Supermarket | Submitted by: Aedifica, Montreal | 📷 David Boyer, Montreal

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2023 Retail Renovation Competition

PROJECT SCOPE: For its third store in the Quebec City area, grocer Avril chose to set up shop on the ground floor of the Place de la Cité in Sainte-Foy mall, which was previously occupied by retail banking and financial services offices. Converting that space to a grocery included the following steps:

  • Removing the two staircases connecting the ground floor space to the main mall concourse and closing the stairwell opening.
  • Building a new entrance vestibule to an interior parking lot including ramps for shopping carts.
  • Taking over a convenience store on the mall concourse level to create the store’s mall entrance with a pair of escalators.
  • Creating a new storefront canopy to mark the exterior entrance, with an adjoining 52-seat outdoor patio.
  • Installing new dedicated loading docks and a receiving area.
  • Creating an interior mezzanine for store management and staff amenities.

First Place: Avril – Place de la Cité

UNIQUE STORE PLANNING: The space’s concrete structural framework and the slab-to-slab clear height of 17 feet guided the design. In particular, the spatial organization of the departments was oriented to the tighter grid of columns. The exposed concrete of the columns and ceiling was modulated in two shades of gray to enhance the perception of height while maintaining the raw character of the surfaces, in contrast to the other architectural components of the store.

First Place: Avril – Place de la Cité

A graphic approach is also deployed throughout the space, both in the architecture with the wooden pergolas, kiosks and walls along the escalators connecting the store to the mall. This approach continues in the graphic communications and large wall illustrations with a clean, monochromatic style that punctuates the interior architecture, facilitates wayfinding and supports the brand identity.

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