Baie-de-Valois Nautical Center / ADHOC architects + Prisme Architecture
Text description provided by the architects. Located on the shores of Lake Saint-Louis in Grande-Anse Park, the reconstruction of Chalet Baie-de-Valois is part of a shoreline revitalization project demanded by the citizens of Pointe-Claire. The building includes a large community hall as well as spaces to enhance the nautical experience and activities offered to more than 4,000 citizens and visitors who visit this area each year. Inspired by the geological stratification of the site, the project reflects the surrounding landscape; the sloped roof recalls the canopy of trees, the wooden cladding embodies the rhythm of tree trunks in a wooden area, and the base of the building represents the geometry of a rocky shore.
The geometry of the roof offers an interesting dialogue with the site, it was designed to optimize passive solar gain and plays an important role in reducing energy consumption. The gesture of the roof translates to the interior of the building, creating an immersive atmosphere that poetically reveals breathtaking views of the river. This canopy rests on a series of glulam columns that are part of the hybrid steel-wood structure of the building and incorporates a large skylight that promotes the natural ventilation of the spaces and allows natural light to diffuse into the community hall.
Main element of the project for its appearance and its ecological properties, wood is both a source of inspiration and a challenge that has accompanied the team since the beginning of the design. Local ash wood resources, recycled from tree felling carried out to eradicate emerald ash borer infestations on the territory, are an integral part of the project. It represents a major feature that can be found throughout the project, both on the ceiling and in the design of the exterior canopy.
Different plank widths were chosen to minimize waste during the reclaimed wood processing process. This rhythm is further enriched by the integration of a gap between each slat, making it possible to highlight the contours of the angular ceiling. These gaps allowed the insertion of linear lighting fixtures between the panels as well as the concealment of the mechanical and acoustic systems behind the ceiling.
The locally sourced eastern white cedar exterior cladding was chosen for its natural look as well as to minimize maintenance requirements. It was originally stained to mimic a weathered look and will therefore require no further coating as the natural silver patina of the wood will gradually take over. A layering of various types of cedar planks also creates a graphic effect on the facades which enhances the project concept of creating layers that reflect the surrounding landscape.
In addition to contributing aesthetically to the project, the use of wood contributes to carbon capture and sequestration. The Baie-de-Valois chalet takes up the challenge of offering citizens the possibility of reclaiming the shores while fighting against climate change. Fitting harmoniously and naturally into its landscape, the pavilion is revealed from the outside, while from the inside, it offers a breathtaking view of the beauty of the lake.