Therme Group is working with the Government of Ontario and City of Toronto to contribute to the revitalization of Ontario Place with partners Mississauga’s of the Credit First Nation (MCFN), Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and The Black North Initiative.
Ontario Place will be a family friendly experience with indoor and outdoor pools, waterslides and a wave pool, natural spaces to relax, sports performance and recovery services, and gardens.
Ontario Place has historically been a publicly accessible destination for recreation, entertainment, and leisure. People will be able to better connect with the lake through the planned creation of more than 3-ha (8 acres) of public spaces, including a free-access public beach and enhanced pedestrian and cycling access.
Therme’s bridge to the West Island will support the extension and enhancement of the William G. Davis Trail across the entire site, including providing a new link to the mainland from the West Island, allowing people to enjoy more of Ontario Place outdoors year-round.
As part of its focus on holistic well-being, Therme Group supports arts and culture by working with local and internationally recognized artists. It commissions and integrates art installations in each of its destinations, bringing art to the public outside of the traditional spaces of museums and galleries.
Therme Canada will create more than 2200 construction jobs, 800 full-time permanent positions, supporting the city and province’s tourism sectors and post-pandemic recovery.
Part of the original intention of Ontario place was to celebrate the province. A large majority of the renderings and images used for the presentation include tropical plants and palm trees. While they are lovely to look at and invoke a wonderful tropical environment, representative of Ontario they are not. How about some granite outcropping’s to jump off of, with more native species rather than a landscape that seems imported from a 2500 km to the south? The interior of those glass houses could be placed anywhere. It would be great if you were in them and new you could only be in Ontario (or at least Canada).
I suspect that the massive Glass structures proposed for Ontario Place will not be built exactly like shown the architectural renderings. Particularly with reference to Energy Efficiency and structural requirements. Nonetheless, an interesting design that takes historic precedent from early Greenhouse Conservancies in 17th c England and the Netherlands, which culminated with the great Industrial Fair (Joseph Paxton’s design for the giant ‘Crystal Palace’) in Hyde Park, London UK in 1851. Continued in various Conservatories in other Countries around the World, including 2 versions of Toronto’s Glass ‘Palace of industry’ (1858), late moved and enlarged at the CNE in 1879 and even the Allan Gardens Conservancy in Toronto (1860, 1879, 1894, 1910). Todays modern versions proliferate from: Biosphere (Montreal), Biosphere 2 (Oracle, Arizona), Eden (Cornwall, UK), Muttart Conservancy (Edmonton, Alberta) etc. Even Windsor, Ontario had an expansive design for a curved wave-like glass structure planned to be embedded in it’s Detroit River embankment in the 1990’s that never came about. It’s great to see the new plans proceeding at Ontario Place and that the local heritage community’s advice was listened to. Proper execution depends upon continuing that public feed back loop and ensuring Ontario Place’s Modern heritage is preserved and enhanced. I tend to agree with David Robbin’s comment (above) that any new design should respect Ontario Place’s first mandate to showcase and celebrate Ontario. One can find Palm trees in many poolside Hotel Conservancies anywhere. Ontario Place deserves a unique Architectural / Landscape design that respects Ontario Native species, diverse landscape, culture and the existing waterfront site’s Modernist built form history.