Palais des congrès de Montréal wins prestigious international innovation award for its Urban Agriculture Lab

The Palais des congrès de Montréal was presented with the prestigious AIPC Innovation Award on July 4, 2017 at the AIPC International Association of Convention Centres Annual Conference in Sydney, Australia. The Palais was recognized for its Urban Agriculture Lab and its innovations in sustainable development. The Lab was among the 16 convention centre entries shortlisted for the award.

The AIPC Innovation Award recognizes excellence in convention centre management by showcasing initiatives that represent innovation, namely through the development of a new, more creative or more effective approach to any aspect of convention centre management, operations or marketing. The Palais des congrès was the Overall Innovation Award Winner as selected by the committee, while the Cairns Convention Center, located in Australia, was the Innovation Award Delegates’ Choice – it won for a promotional item made from steel recovered from their old roof.


In 2016, the Palais des congrès de Montréal became the main showcase in Québec for experimenting with and advocating for urban farming technologies and techniques, when it opened its Urban Agriculture Lab jointly with AU/LAB, an organization associated with the faculty of science and institute of environmental studies at Université du Québec à Montréal. The Urban Agriculture Lab includes:

  • Culti-VERT, a technological showcase for green roofs and container gardening;
  • Three pollinating beehives;
  • VERTical, an urban agriculture project driven by new vertical farming technology that is based on free-standing structures equipped with experimental wall tarps; and
  • Urban Vines, Canada’s first urban rooftop vineyard.

The various components of the Palais Urban Agriculture Lab are primarily tasked with:

  • Helping reduce urban heat islands and improving air quality in the Montréal downtown area;
  • Encouraging the real estate industry and property owners to adopt concrete steps toward greening their rooftops;
  • Promoting Montréal’s reputation as a world-class city firmly committed to fostering urban sustainability; and
  • Enabling convention participants and the Maison du Père homeless shelter to benefit from the crops grown, with the help of Capital Catering, the Palais’ exclusive caterer.