Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - 13

CASE STUDY

GROCERY STORE PRODUCES
FRESH FOOD AND HARVESTS WATER
IN VILLE ST. LAURENT, QUEBEC
BY JOYCE MCLEAN, ASSOCIATE EDITOR, LAM

It's just 44 steps up to the roof from Richard Duchemin's office in his familyrun IGA on Henri-Bourassa Boulevard West in Saint Laurent, Quebec.
Those 44 steps lead him to the retail food store's food producing green roof
- a first on a food store roof in Quebec and still a rare application for food
production in North America.

I

n 2014, the city of Saint-Laurent (part of Greater Montreal)
passed a requirement for all new construction to have at minimum 50 per cent vegetation coverage on the roof, a key component of the city's climate change adaptation strategy, and to help
lower greenhouse gases and provide much needed greenery.
At the time, while others might have seen this policy as a
problem, Richard Duchemin and his two brothers Daniel and
Jean saw an opportunity. The IGA store, started by their father
Normand in 1984, was already well known for its innovative
approach to marketing food to its customers. In 1988, they were
the first food store in Quebec to display fresh produce at the
front of the store; the first supermarket to roast coffee beans in
1996; and in 1996, the first supermarket to include a fresh fish
display with over 100 feet of counter and ice.
After several store renovations and a 30 per cent expansion in
the mid-1990s, the Duchemins knew their business could sustain
a larger building. They set out to build a green building, which
would reflect their personal commitment to sustainability. In 2016,
the Duchemins finished construction on their 25,000 square foot
LIVINGARCHITECTUREMONITOR.COM

supermarket and the building attained LEED Silver certification.
The Duchemins used the expertise of La ligne verte: Toit
vert - a Montreal-based firm - who worked with Richard closely
for over a year to design, construct and implement the green
roof which was incorporated into the design when the building was open in 2016. As it was a new building, the green roof
consultants ensured that there was sufficient loading capacity to
support the kind of green roof plants that Richard envisioned
offering his customers in the store. La ligne verte:Toit vert also
ensured the roof was fully accessible with a safety railing.
The range of produce grown in 2017 included a variety of
greens, such as spinach, Swiss chard, lettuces and kale; carrots,
radishes, white turnips, broccoli, cauliflower, red and yellow
beets, eggplant, beans, bell peppers, hot peppers, tomatoes,
cucumbers and garlic. In addition to strawberries, the green roof
is also supporting the production of herbs such as dill, coriander
and basil. Several beehives are also situated on the roof.
Two different kinds of spring mix lettuce have been the
most consistent and successful crops grown on the roof,
LIVING ARCHITECTURE MONITOR / SPRING 2018 / 13


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018

Table of Contents
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - I
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - Cover1
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - Cover2
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - Table of Contents
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - A1
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Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - Cover3
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - Cover4
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - M1
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Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - AD2
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Spring 2018 - AD3
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