Innovative Request for Qualification - Rethinking public spaces, deadline: Midnight, June 12

May 29, 2020

Montréal’s Bureau du design is launching an innovative request for qualification in order to create a pool of multidisciplinary teams that consist of professionals in all fields of design and architecture; established in Montréal; and have the capacity, experience, and skills to design and carry out temporary urban development projects, in particular on commercial streets.

This process is not linked to any specific project because, given the COVID-19 pandemic, the lifting of the lockdown, the summer season, and the resumption of business activities, the many challenges related to health and social distancing measures require creative and innovative solutions to rearrange numerous public spaces. Selecting a group of qualified and competent bidders will thus allow the city to be more agile in awarding professional service contracts by mutual agreement (below the threshold for public tenders).

In this way, boroughs and city departments as well as the Sociétés de développement commercial will be able to call on pre-qualified teams to design and implement measures that address their issues, such as modified routes and user mobility, safe boarding and disembarking of public transit users, waiting lines for businesses, outdoor sales and consumption areas, functional and technical pickup and delivery spaces, rest areas and street furniture (e.g., washrooms, benches, no-contact garbage receptacles).

Given the experimental nature of the temporary development projects both currently underway and to come, it is important to make good use of a range or high-performance solutions that can be deployed throughout the city while developing a collective intelligence as a UNESCO City of Design.

An innovative and inclusive process

This process fosters the awarding of municipal contracts to Montréal designers and architects, including those of the next generation, and gets them involved in the economic recovery of Montréal, UNESCO City of Design. This is a tangible example of the principles set out in the Montréal 2030 Agenda for Quality and Exemplarity in Design and Architecture, which focuses on creativity, innovation, and sustainability by making designers and architects allies in Montréal’s green and social transition during the COVID-19 crisis.

Pre-qualified teams may be invited to a remote interview by a contracting city borough or department following a random draw. They must then be able to demonstrate their ability to rethink the public space and share their motivations and thoughts on the issues involved with redeveloping arteries, whatever their foreseen configuration (pedestrians, the existence of health corridors, creating safe active transportation lanes (SATL), etc.) may be. 

This pool may be renewed in 6 to 12 months from now.The Bureau du design will publish a list of pre-qualified teams as well as the results of all draws carried out as part of this request for qualifications, along with the names of the contracted teams. 

Use the online form to take part in the request for qualification or for more information (French only). The document below shows the content of the online form but canot be used to take part in the RQ.

For any questions, please write to Montréal’s Bureau du design at

> The results of this Request for Qualification process are presented in the Competition section


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Pre-qualification criteria

The call is aimed at pre-qualifying multidisciplinary design and architecture teams, which may be composed of different entities (companies, sole proprietors [self-employed workers], non-profit organizations, cooperatives, groups of individuals, associations, etc.) that satisfy the criteria below. 

  1. Each entity of a team must be established (have an address) on the territory of the Ville de Montréal.
  2. A team must collectively possess, without being limited to, experience in service design, urban design, street furniture design, signage, commercial design, temporary structures, interactive design, project and budget management, consultation/federation of stakeholders.
  3. A team must be able to present at least three public-space development projects that involve a certain level of complexity and illustrate the experience and skills listed in the previous point. Unproduced concepts may be added to demonstrate the team’s creativity in rethinking public spaces and their uses.
  4. Each team must name a coordinator and deputy, both of whom must have at least five years of experience in project management and staff coordination.
  5. Each entity of a team must be available and in a position to satisfactorily carry out a project/contract over the coming six to 12 months.
  6. Any individual entity may only be a part of one team.
  7. Each entity must be registered on the Ville de Montréal’s list of suppliers

Use of the pool of pre-qualified teams

Montréal’s Bureau du design will recommend that contracting city departments and boroughs make use of the pool of pre-qualified teams as follows:

1. Select at least three teams at random for any given project (electronic drawing done by the Bureau du design).
2. Conduct a 30-minute remote interview with each team.
3. If the contract value (below the threshold for holding public tenders) is a predetermined lump sum based on the project requirements, award the contract by mutual agreement to the team with the best qualities (experience, skills, capacity, and understanding).
If the contract value (below the threshold for holding public tenders) cannot be estimated, request a submission based on the project requirements (as developed by the Bureau du design) from at least two of the interviewed teams, and award the contract by mutual agreement to the team offering the best value or with the best qualities (experience, skills, capacity, and understanding).

Professional services that may be required

To ensure a high level of quality, contracts awarded to pre-qualified teams should ideally include the following professional services:

- Diagnostic study (stakeholder consultation and analysis; assessment of site, component diversity, and functional needs)
- Design
- Creation of plans and specifications
- Project management
- Coordination of project implementation costs with the contracting department or borough
- Supervision and quality control of manufacture or implementation
- Supervision of installation and dismantling
- Spot checks and maintenance recommendations throughout the facilities’ lifespans
- Post-project recycling or reuse solutions
- Taking royalty-free documentary photographs
- Writing and sharing a project report (lessons learned, possible improvements, etc.)