Governor General's Medals in Architecture — 2010 Recipient

Promenade Samuel-De Champlain
Award Category: 
Governor General’s Medals in Architecture

DAOUST LESTAGE inc. architecture design urbain

Lead design architect(s): 

Renée Daoust, FIRAC
Réal Lestage

Honoring Quebec City's 400th anniversary and drawing on the unique history and genius loci of the site, the Promenade Samuel-De Champlain unites two icons of Quebec City's identity - the river and the cliff - creating a coherent, active landscape facade for the capital city.  The Promenade reclaims neglected industrial and infrastructural fringe, transforming it into a public, leisure oriented natural environment and reactivating the city's access to the St. Lawrence River and shoreline.

The Quai des Cageux marks the western entrance of the project.  The language and expression of the buildings draw on the early history of Quebec and refer to the harbor vernacular and the lumber pilings that characterized Quebec’s ports for decades.  Reviving the imagery of a river pier and its structures, the Quai des Cageux becomes a local landmark and light beacon on the horizon.

Jury Comment(s): 

"The jury commends these architects and planners for creating not only a civic gesture but real life at the waters’ edge.  There is no imposition of the project on the pedestrian; the built moments are not only finely crafted but are quietly balanced between historical allusion and contemporary culture."

"This project animates the St. Lawrence River edge with a lively array of outdoor places.  The references to the long ribbons of the seigniorial settlements are evident and appropriate.  They both run away from the river and are pulled out into the water as piers.  I like the beautifully restrained compositions of pure elements that are strung along the pathway system."

Click for full version: 




photos: Marc Cramer