Commerce Design Montréal Contest chosen for the 2006 Dubai International Award for Best Practices to Improve the Living Environment

    MONTREAL, Aug. 17 /CNW Telbec/ - Mr. Benoit Labonté, member of the
executive committee responsible for culture, heritage, downtown and design is
pleased to announce that the Commerce Design Montréal Contest has been chosen
as one of the 48 best practices from among 703 entries from 88 countries as
part of the 2006 Dubai International Award for Best Practices to Improve the
Living Environment by UN-HABITAT.
    The Dubai International Award for Best Practices to Improve the Living
Environment recognizes outstanding projects to improve the living environment,
in a remarkable and sustainable way. Best practices were defined by the United
Nations and the international community as successful initiatives which:

    - Have a demonstrable and tangible impact on improving people's quality
      of life.
    - Are the result of effective partnership between the public, private and
      civic sectors of society.
    - Are socially, culturally, economically and environmentally sustainable.

    Firmly rooted in Montréal's culture and public image, commercial design
now provides leverage for sustainable integration in the areas of economic
development, quality of life and environment, and social and urban identity.
Backed by this integrated vision of urban development, Montréal now has the
benefit of a network of structuring partners able to mobilize multiple
resources and reach and involve a broad public base well beyond the design
    "The Commerce Design Montréal operation is a meaningful model of
sustainable urban development because of its efforts to restore and reuse the
old urban fabric, maintain local services and promote a social and cultural
mix of central neighbourhoods. Recognition by the United Nations of this
Montréal initiative in the field of design supports Montréal's designation as
a UNESCO City of Design, as well as the sustained efforts by the city to
enhance quality design at businesses over the past 10 years," said Mr.

    Commerce Design Montréal: an exportable concept

    The Commerce Design Montréal concept extended from 1995 to 2004, to raise
awareness among business owners of the benefits of investing in quality design
for their establishments, with the help of a qualified professional. The main
objective was to create a domino effect, convince other business owners of the
merits of inspiring design to improve business and promote the revitalization
of commercial streets.
    Thanks to the program's success with the community and the media,
Montréal is now exporting the concept and transferring expertise. Since 2003,
five licenses have been granted to the cities of Trois-Rivières,
Saint-Etienne, the Chamber of Commerce and industry of Marseille and Lyon in
France, and Times Square in New York.
    In 2005, following a call for proposals involving major design
organizations in Montréal, the mission to continue to revitalize business
design, which was first introduced by the city with the Commerce Design
Montréal Contest, was transferred to Créativité Montréal.
    Commerce Design Montréal is now part of the 2,700 best practices in 140
countries. Please visit

For further information:

For further information: Stéphanie Jecrois, Design Montréal, (514)
872-5388; Source: Bernard Larin, Cabinet du maire et du comité exécutif, (514)

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