December 2020

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D E C E M B E R 2 0 2 0 | 37 Place des Arts du Grand Sudbury R EN D ER I N GS CO U RT E SY YA L LOW EGA B ÉL A N G ER SA L AC H A RC H I T EC T U R E PLACE DES ARTS DU GRAND SUDBURY by ROBIN BRUNET T here's nothing like a lively arts centre to help revitalize a down- town core, and the new Place des Arts du Grand Sudbury (PdA) suits that purpose, along with being the first multidisciplinary arts centre in northeastern Ontario. Moreover, the striking three-storey facility with its skewed facade and inge- nious use of Corten cladding serves to bring seven French-language cultural organizations together under one roof. Marc Lavigne, administrative director of Place des Arts du Grand Sudbury, says, "The idea for the facil- ity goes all the way back to the 1970s: that's how long these groups have been waiting for this to happen. They had been operating out of low-rent cubbyholes, in a church, even in the attic of an apartment building in their humble beginnings. "The Regroupement des organismes culturels de Sudbury, a coalition of seven arts, culture and heritage orga- nizations, undertook the development of the PdA project in the fall of 2010. Following a large multisectorial forum, their mandate was to create a home for the 'Francophonie' of Sudbury, a public gathering space where arts and culture would be celebrated on a daily basis. But it wasn't until a feasibility study was completed in July of 2015 that the project began in earnest." The new facility features a 300- seat theatre, a multifunction studio, an art gallery, a youth zone, an early childhood artistic centre, a bookstore, office spaces, and a bistro. All these elements will enable the provision of 850 cultural activities annually, which in turn is expected to attract 50,000 visitors to Sudbury's downtown core each year. Yallowega Bélanger Salach Architecture (YBSA) and Moriyama & Teshima Architects were selected for the project in 2017. Louis Belanger, principal at YBSA, says, "We formed a joint venture as we had worked together in the past: we have a strong local presence and Moriyama & Teshima has great design experience, and the work was shared equally." Vision sessions with the seven stakeholders were crucial in not only determining the building's layout but also keeping a lid on a limited budget. "Originally we wanted a five-storey building of 60,000 square feet, but by necessity that was whittled down," Lavigne says. "All the components we needed were retained, they were just reduced in size, and other areas became multi-purpose." The full effect of Place Des Arts' unique geometry is most evident on the corner of Larch and Elgin streets, where the building's rectangular shape, dominated by three levels of glazing (that render the large struc- ture almost transparent), becomes a series of angles cutting into each other. "It's different geometries play- ing against each other, which seemed appropriate for an arts building on this site," Belanger says. LOCATION 27 Larch Street, Sudbury, Ontario OWNER /DEVELOPER Place des Arts du Grand Sudbury ARCHITECTS Yallowega Bélanger Salach Architecture / Moriyama & Teshima Architects GENER AL CONTR ACTOR HEIN STRUCTUR AL CONSULTANT A2S Consulting Engineers MECHANICAL /ELECTRICAL CONSULTANT SNC-Lavalin Inc. AUDIO-VISUAL CONSULTANT Novita Techne Limited ACOUSTIC CONSULTANTS Swallow Acoustic Consultants Ltd. / Thornton Tomasetti L ANDSCAPE ARCHITECT PMA Landscape Architects Ltd. TOTAL SIZE 40,000 square feet TOTAL COST $30 million

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