The redevelopment of the park, with the “Stadium in the Park” design concept, is an exciting urban design effort that encompasses a renovated stadium and arena, development of 300,000 sf of retail, renovation of heritage buildings, and an urban park for the people of Ottawa. Designed by Cannon Design, the project enhances both the history and the identity of the park by taking advantage of its location on the Rideau Canal. The result is a stadium in the park. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Lansdowne Park has a rich history and a strong identity. This concept is important and innovative in that it departs from the traditional notion of a stadium as an inert building and instead takes a position that architecture is a temporal and dynamic, event-based art in which people and built form intersect. This is expressed with a public space/park concourse that encircles the stadium, providing the public with opportunities to flow through the stadium structure while still in the park. This creates an entirely new paradigm for how modern, urban stadiums are designed and constructed. No longer must stadiums be confined with parking structures and paved roadways.
This project reveals how stadiums can coexist with the natural environment they inhabit. Wooden frames create a canopy and dramatic image for the park while building on the design themes. The frames are designed in a rhythmic way to create a laminar flow of space the public can actually flow through, into and out of, while enjoying the park. This is coupled with a public concourse section, accessible at all times to people who can, if they choose, ride a bike, walk or jog. These areas where one can exist both in the park and the stadium at the same time define the project.
The North face of the stadium will create the redeveloped retail section of Lansdowne Park. The North stands of the stadium will “box” in the commercial face to Aberdeen Drive in Ottawa. The created retail area will be a one-story, multi-tenant space. The end spaces will include stairs and elevators to create two-story retail spaces for larger tenants. Guests can purchase tickets for events at Lansdowne Park at the retail center and also access it from the interior concourse. The renovated stadium provides 24,000 seats for sports and entertainment events and also allows for a temporary expansion to 45,000 seats for major national and international events. The stadium design celebrates porosity, accessibility, and transparency while preserving stunning views of the canal.
Lansdowne Park has wonderful potential for urban revitalization. Its history, heritage architecture and location are unique assets that, with the stadium in the park, achieve the desired plan for a dynamic urban place.