The Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the centrepiece of Ottawa’s winter festival. The chalets are located at key access points along the “World’s Largest Skating Rink.”
The mandate was to create highly functional structures that portray the National Capital as a cosmopolitan winter destination. The arched steel structure is inspired by Victorian-era bridges along the canal and images of skate blades and sled runners.
The chalets provide fully-accessible skate changing and washroom facilities. With covered porches at each end, generous interior and exterior seating and expansive windows, the change-rooms offer views of the canal and shelter from wind and cold.
“This set of temporary seasonal shelters, through their contemporary design, embrace fluidity and movement as a metaphor for the principal activity on the Rideau Canal in winter — skating. Unlike their predecessors, these contemporary shelters offer views to the canal and natural supplementary warmth from sunlight while skaters get the opportunity to warm up. These wonderful shelters are examples of a simple, functional structure achieving a landmark status albeit on a seasonal basis."