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Montreal Has Mini Workspaces With Free Wifi & Outlets So You Can Work Remotely Outside

It's summer. You're cute. People should be seeing you!

Senior Editor
Air Commune Îlots d'été workspaces in downtown Montreal and Villeray.

Air Commune Îlots d'été workspaces in downtown Montreal and Villeray.

For many, remote work means rolling out of bed at 8:55 a.m. for the beginning of a 9 a.m. shift, typing dreary emails on a flat laptop keyboard in the dull light of a decaying Montreal apartment, logging off well after 5 p.m., and straining now-aching fingers and wrists to select an Uber Eats order, clutch a tooth brush and pull up the covers over a vitamin D-deprived body before succumbing to merciful slumber. Montreal's free public workspaces offer an escape from the monotony.

The Îlots d'été are mini street-side stations with tables, benches, outlets and, between 5 a.m. and 10 p.m., wifi. Though perhaps less comfortable than your stained, reclining desk chair, the little outdoor shelters are urban oases for work-hour sunbathing, pretending to make progress on tasks while gossiping with friends, people-watching and, for those who live to be seen, exhibitionism.

This summer, 39 of the city's 40 Îlots d'été are concentrated in more central boroughs: from Monkland village in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce to Mercier and from Ahuntsic and Montréal-Nord to the Sud-Ouest.

The 40th is at the northernmost tip of the island near the Plage de l'Est in Rivière-des-Prairies–Pointe-aux-Trembles.

Aire Commune, the organization behind the Îlots, has also installed a larger workspace, the Station d'été, at Place Ville-Marie downtown.

The site consists of two bookable meeting spaces with televisions in addition to free wifi and outlets. The rooms are free to reserve for 50 or 90-minute time slots.

The Îlots d'été will be available seven days a week until October.

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