Completion Date: June 2016


Paquet Wharf and Esplanade, Lévis, Québec, Canada

A former industrial wasteland has become a landmark and a destination that is multifunctional, fun and spectacular all at once.

What was once a mere drop-off point opposite historic Quebec City has been transformed into a grand entrance to the City of Lévis: a cruise and ferry wharf, a tourist attraction, a historic interpretation site, a local recreational area and a precious green space, with a waterside bicycle path minutes from downtown. Its green and hardscape areas are also designed and equipped to host festivals.

At the heart of the design, a monumental fountain with 160 jets performs a stunning spectacle of programmed sequences, in some cases shooting water nine metres high, in others bubbling to the rhythm of a multi-coloured light show. The fountain offers both a dramatic panorama when viewed from Quebec City and a playful, multisensory experience up close.

The adjacent grassy amphitheater’s subtle pyramid shape is an exceptional vantage point to view majestic Old Quebec. Architectural “ice pools” with islands and benches in the form of floating ice recall the history of La Traverse (“the crossing” between Quebec City and Lévis), which was more or less icebound in winter before the arrival of modern icebreakers.

Cast-iron detailing on custom furniture and lighting recalls the area’s industrial and maritime. Benches and picnic tables’ wooden blocks resemble the natural harbour’s original wooden docks, while concrete pavers are patterned to recall the wooden hulls of early sailing ships.

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