Montreal Planetarium

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This article is about the former Dow Planetarium in central Montreal. For the current planetarium, see Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium.
Montreal Planetarium
Dow Planetarium
Planétarium de Montréal
Planétarium Dow
Dow Planetarium 2012 01.jpg
Montreal Planetarium is located in Montreal
Montreal Planetarium
Location of the Dow Planetarium in Montreal
Established 1 April 1966 (1966-04-01)
Dissolved 11 October 2011 (2011-10-11)
Location 1000 Saint Jacques Street, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Coordinates 45°29′46″N 73°33′50″W / 45.4961233°N 73.5638563°W / 45.4961233; -73.5638563
Type Planetarium
Public transit access MtlMetro2.svg Bonaventure

The Montreal Planetarium (French: Planétarium de Montréal) (formerly the Dow Planetarium, French: Planétarium Dow) is a decommissioned public planetarium located at Chaboillez Square just outside downtown Montreal. It permanently closed in October 2011. [1]


The planetarium was opened in advance of Expo 67, inaugurated on April 1, 1966 by then-Montreal mayor Jean Drapeau. Its inaugural show, "New Skies for a New City", premiered on April 4, 1966. Work had commenced on the project more than three years before its launch, under the guidance of Dr. Pierre Gendron, a former professor of chemistry and founding Dean of the Faculty of Science at the University of Ottawa, who was an avid amateur astronomer. President of the board of directors of Dow Breweries, Gendron convinced Dow to create a world-class planetarium in Montreal, as part of the Canadian Centennial celebrations.

The architects on the project were David-Barott-Boulva. The chosen design had an astronomical theme, and the exterior of the dome resembles Saturn surrounded by its rings. The Planetarium was built at a cost of $1.2 million on the site of the historic Bonaventure Station on Chaboillez Square near Old Montreal.

The Planetarium produced more than 250 shows, was visited by nearly six million spectators, and made more than 58,000 presentations in French and English. The Planetarium was one of Montreal's most popular tourist attractions.

Closure of the Dow Planetarium and opening of the Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium[edit]

On October 10, 2011, the Dow Planetarium gave its final show. The city-owned building has been ceded to the École de technologie supérieure, a major engineering school which is nearby. [2]

The Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium opened in April 2013 as the successor to the Montreal planetarium. It is located in the Espace pour la Vie, near the Olympic stadium and the Biodome in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The new installation has two separate theatres as well as exhibits on space and astronomy. The building, designed by Cardin + Ramirez et Associés, Architectes, is certified LEED Platinum.[3]


  1. ^ "Montrealers bid farewell to Canada's oldest planetarium". CBC News. 10 October 2011. 
  2. ^ "Montréal cède le Planétarium Dow à l'École de technologie supérieure". Radio-Canada. 14 March 2013. 
  3. ^ "A sustainable building". official site. date unknown.  Check date values in: |date= (help)

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