Reception Pavilion of the Québec National Assembly

Can architecture change our relationship to democracy? The answer in this particular case comes in a spiral ramp that forms a scenographic trail from the entrance of the Québec National Assembly’s reception pavilion to the heritage building’s core. Inaugurated in May 2019, the pavilion presented an opportunity to transform the ties between citizens and their representatives, to showcase Québec’s political heritage, and to meet the client’s technical requirements, and do so at a high architectural standard.


Architects

Provencher_Roy +
GLCRM Architectes

Electromechanical

CIMA+

Civil Engineering

WSP Canada

Photography

Olivier Blouin / Stéphane Groleau

Contractor

Pomerleau

Structure

WSP Canada

Security

CSP Consultants en Sécurité

Certification

Silver LEED NC

Country

Canada


City

Québec


Client

Quebec’s National Assembly


Surface Area

5,100 m2


Year

2019


The space experience

Built completely underground, on either side of the site’s central axis, the new reception pavilion of the National Assembly of Québec helps preserve the Parliament Building’s facade, a potent symbol of the collective memory, while advancing the concept of a living, participatory democracy. Because it is underground, the project is free of all formal constraints, thus shifting the emphasis to experiencing the space.

In the centre of the pavilion, a citizen’s agora, open to all, serves as a gathering spot that fosters encounter and dialogue; a monumental oculus overhead provides illumination as well as a window onto the past and future. The space’s circular shape evokes notions of neutrality, unity and equality; its insertion at the base of the Parliament Building is a metaphor for these values as the latter’s very foundation. The lighting imparts to the trail a museum-like quality, as does the colour scheme, shifting from white to blue to red, a reference to the National Assembly’s Salon bleu and Salon rouge.


The main
thread

In the centre of the pavilion, a citizen’s agora, open to all, serves as a gathering spot that fosters encounter and dialogue; a monumental oculus overhead provides illumination as well as a window onto the past and future. The space’s circular shape evokes notions of neutrality, unity and equality; its insertion at the base of the Parliament Building is a metaphor for these values as the latter’s very foundation. The lighting imparts to the trail a museum-like quality, as does the colour scheme, shifting from white to blue to red, a reference to the National Assembly’s Salon bleu and Salon rouge.

Educational
spaces

Reception, security and check-in areas, checkrooms, multi-purpose rooms and committee rooms are organized around the ramp. Pedagogical areas allow visitors to discover the evolution of democracy, but also how it works in real time, via observation windows that offer an immersion in the heart of parliamentary debates. The work of the light gives the route museum qualities, while the colors, going from white to blue and red, in reference to the Blue Salon and the Red Salon of the National Assembly, allow orientation in the space. The tunnel that houses the 1% dedicated to art, the work of Jonathan Villeneuve, serves as a link between the new pavilion and the existing parliament.

A sustainable gesture

The project is a candidate for LEED NC Silver certification; its initial concept constitutes its most sustainable gesture, namely the preservation of an exceptional heritage site through its integration into the dynamic of contemporary life.

Coupe du pavillon d'accueil de l'assemblée nationale du Québec

Project Team

Neil Aspinall, Émilie Banville, Maïda Beylerian, Sami Bouzouita, Zoey Cai, Marilina Cianci, Nicolas Demers-Stoddart, Normand Desjardins, Karim Duranceau, Maxime Duval-Stojanović , Matthieu Geoffrion, Maxime Giguère, Charles-Alexandre Lefebvre, Daniel Legault, Pierre Lussier, Lauriève Marquis, Fanette Montmartin, Andres Moreno, Franck Murat, Claude Provencher

Distinctions

2021
Honorable Mention, Public Buildings & Institutional, LOOP Design Awards
2021
Prix d’excellence, catégories Multirésidentiel et Solution créative, Cecobois
2020
Prix Architecture-Design, catégorie Bâtiment institutionnel, Architecture Masterprize Awards
2020
Prix d’Excellence - Amélioration des infrastructures - Bâtiment de faible hauteur, American Concrete Institute - Section du Québec et de l’est de l’Ontario
2020
Grand prix, Génie-Conseil, Bâtiment Mécanique - Électrique, Association des firmes de génie-conseil - Québec (AFG)
2020
Mention - Mise en valeur du patrimoine (agrandissement), Accessibilité universelle, Ordre des architectes du Québec
2020
Grand Prize - Public institution, Grands Prix du Design
2020
Grand Pize, Universal accessibility, Grands Prix du Design
2018
Merit Award, « Highly Commended » category, World Architecture Festival
2016
Merit Award, Canadian Architect Awards of Excellence