HISTORY OF VANIER COLLEGE
Streams that crossed our campus

 
Ruisseau Raimbault (Raimbault Creek) used to run through the Vanier campus right through the areas currently occupied by the N Building and the Sports Complex.

 
The creek can be seen in more detail above running its course from Town of Mount Royal and the continuing north towards the back river (Rivière des Prairies). Raimbault Creek became the object of numerous complaints from the citizens principally regarding it's lamentably polluted state. The city completed a project in 1961 to completely submerge it underground though pipes such as the ones you saw in the tunnels of the previous page. (The above image is from undermontreal.com)

Photo of Saint-Laurent citizens rowing in Raimbault Creek, taken
in the late 1950s shortly before it was submerged beneath the city.
Photo: Archives de la Ville de Saint-Laurent, P643

More on Ruisseau Raimbault. This stream was actually a continuation of Ruisseau Notre-Dame-des-Neiges, which continued north as it flowed through Town of Mount Royal, and ultimately towards the Rivière des Prairies (Back River). It received its name because it passed through the land of Pierre Raimbault, a major landowner in Saint-Laurent. Right up to the late 1950s, it flowed above ground through Ville Saint-Laurent. In April 1959, the stream was covered with oil and a fire broke out suddenly upon its surface. At that time, it served as a dump and the unpleasant stench of the water was accompanied by the fact that it encouraged the proliferation of mosquitoes in the area. Some people indicated that Raimbault was no longer really a watercourse but had been reduced to an oily trough of sludge. Consequently, it was entirely diverted into the newly constructed Decarie/Raimbault Collector (sewer) which was completed in 1961. Today, it can only be seen above ground at the exit point where that sewer drains into Rivière des Prairies. See more photos of the Secteur du Ruisseau Raimbault throughout the years below.


Secteur du Ruisseau Raimbault in 1920. (Click on it for a larger version.)
Photo: Archives de la Ville de Montréal


Secteur du Ruisseau Raimbault in 1945. (Click on it for a larger version.)
Photo: Archives de la Ville de Montréal


Secteur du Ruisseau Raimbault, also in 1945. (Click on it for a larger version.)
Photo: Archives de la Ville de Montréal


The underground diversion of Ruisseau Raimbault began in 1959. (Click for a larger version.)
Photo: Archives de la Ville de Montréal


This photo shows an employee of Atlas Construction doing an inspection in the completed tunnel.
Photo: Archives de la Ville de Montréal


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