4. Issues and Strategic Directions
4.2 Strategic Directions
4.2.6 Architectural motif and site planning
None of the well-crafted buildings shown in old illustrations and photographs of the site have survived. For visitors, the modern architecture of the existing structures represents, as it were, a break with the past.
The current facilities, with their modern design, are not very evocative of the site’s heritage. Furthermore, because of the vegetation layout, observers are unable to obtain a clear idea of the site’s general features. Trees limit the amount of usable space and undermine the visual link with the surrounding bodies of water and the two locks.
Owing its central location and proximity to the marina, the old superintendent’s house could potentially serve as a reception and service centre for both pleasure boaters and shoreside visitors.
The presence of large numbers of visitors sometimes leads to dissatisfaction about the lack of mooring places and can create conflict between pleasure boaters passing through the canal and those moored at the dock. The fact that the dock is located beside a public boardwalk creates security problems for boats moored there at night.
Periods of intensive use also led to dissatisfaction about the lack of parking spaces. However, finding a solution to parking problems is one of the issues that will be addressed in concert with the borough council. The poor layout of the area around the workshop and the presence of pillars and parking spots beneath the viaducts have helped to reduce the pedestrian link between the locks sector and the boardwalk.
- Highlight the distinctive character of the Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue Canal by using a coherent, meaningful architectural motif and recalling various significant elements of the canal-building period.
- Work with the borough council and a cooperative association to set up a reception and service centre in the old superintendent’s house.
- Improve the functional organization of outdoor spaces with respect to the requirements of the main activities, the comfort of shoreside visitors, and any future developments affecting the remains of the first lock.
- Improve the functional organization of the mooring docks and access to the lock based on the specific needs of pleasure boaters passing through or mooring in the canal.