Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal is the focal point of Place d’Armes and the architectural pinnacle of the city. The first Catholic church dedicated to Mary was built here in 1672. In 1824, architect James O’Donnell was hired to create its replacement. He designed an elegant Gothic Revival façade. The consecration ceremony was held on July 1, 1829. The west tower (La Persévérance or The Perseverance) was added in 1841. The other (La Tempérance or The Temperance) was finished two years later. Their 200 foot height, together with the building’s 259 foot length, qualified Notre-Dame Basilica as the largest church in North America for nearly five decades.