Verdun, Quebec Canada

Discover Verdun, Quebec: A Blend of History and Modernity

Verdun, Quebec, a borough of Montreal, is located in the southeastern part of the island. Once known as a working-class neighbourhood, Verdun has undergone significant gentrification and social change in the 21st century.

The Origin of Verdun, Quebec

The borough's name, Verdun, is a shortening of Saverdun, the hometown of its early settler Zacharie Dupuy in France. Contrary to popular belief, the name does not derive from the Battle of Verdun in World War I, as it predates the battle by centuries.

The Rich History of Verdun, Quebec

Early History

Archaeological evidence suggests the presence of indigenous peoples in Verdun as early as 5,500 years ago. The area was known as Côte-des-Argoulets (Sharpshooter's Ridge), in reference to the arquebus, an infantry gun. The first colonial settlers were militiamen granted concessions in 1665 in exchange for defence against the Iroquois.

In 1671, the Fief of Verdun was created when land was granted to Zacharie Dupuy, who derived the name Verdun from his native village of Saverdun in France. The area experienced a population boom after the completion of a dyke in 1896, which had been built to prevent frequent flooding.

20th Century Developments

Verdun became a town in 1907 and a city in 1912. Between 1911 and 1924, the population tripled and urbanization expanded rapidly. The Verdun Natatorium was built in 1930, the Verdun Hospital in 1932, and the Verdun Auditorium in 1938.

The municipality of Île-Saint-Paul, now known as Nuns' Island, was annexed to Verdun in 1956. The area was rapidly urbanized following the opening of the Champlain Bridge in 1962.

Verdun in the 21st Century

In 2002, Verdun became a borough of Montreal. The borough has experienced rapid gentrification and social change in recent years. Today, Verdun is home to many thriving microbreweries and bars. In 2020, it was listed as the eleventh "coolest" neighbourhood in the world by Time Out magazine.

Verdun, Quebec: A Geographical Overview

The borough of Verdun is partly located on the Island of Montreal, as well as including all of Nuns' Island. The Montreal Island part of the borough is defined on its eastern side by the St. Lawrence River, and on the west by the Canal de l'Aqueduc.

Demographics of Verdun, Quebec

In the early part of the 20th century, Verdun had a majority English-speaking population. Today, it is about two-thirds French-speaking.

Infrastructure in Verdun, Quebec


Verdun is served by Quebec Autoroutes 15 and 20, which skirt the northern and eastern edges of its mainland portion and merge with Autoroute 10 on Nuns' Island. The borough is served by the Green Line of the Montreal Metro: Verdun, De l'Église, and LaSalle stations, along with Jolicoeur station immediately across the aqueduct in Ville-Émard.


Significant medical facilities in the borough include the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, a McGill University psychiatric hospital. The francophone Hôpital de Verdun, affiliated with the Université de Montréal Faculty of Medicine, is also in the borough.


Recreational facilities include the Verdun Auditorium, a hockey arena and concert hall. Expansive parks with bike paths line the banks of the St. Lawrence River, making Verdun one of the few parts of the Island of Montreal to open onto the whole length of its waterfront. The borough's community centres are the Centre communautaire Marcel-Giroux, near the borough hall; the Centre communautaire Elgar on Nuns' Island; and the Centre culturel de Verdun, in the western part of the borough.