All those outdoor staircases in front of older buildings in Montréal aren’t just an interesting architectural feature. There’s actually a reason behind them: staircases take up space.
To maximise the living area inside a building, staircases were installed outside instead, in the small green space in front of the building.
Another reason was to keep heating costs down. If the staircase had been built inside, that’s more space requiring heat in the winter.
And here you thought Montrealers were just nutjobs for installing their staircases outside in a city of snow and ice.
On your next visit to Montréal, you can check out staircases in the neighbourhood called le Plateau-Mont-Royal, for example.
un escalier extérieur
an outdoor staircase
L’escalier est à l’extérieur.
The staircase is outside.