Sustainable development

BORÉALIS: A FORMER FILTRATION PLANT CONVERTED INTO A CULTURAL SPACE

Located in a former filtration plant built in 1920, BORÉALIS is a perfect example of sustainable development. With a solid, forward-looking business plan, BORÉALIS successfully converted the plant into a history centre, meeting the following criteria for sustainable development: respect for existing environmental resources and the building’s extraordinary geographic location on the bank of the St. Lawrence River; preservation of the social and cultural fabric tied to the pulp and paper industry in Trois-Rivières, the Mauricie region and Quebec; and the promotion of long-term regional economic development through tourism.


 

Respect for existing environmental resources
In converting the former filtration plant into a history centre, we were able to strike a perfect balance between preserving the original building and incorporating the latest trends in museum design. For example, several of the modern concrete floors at BORÉALIS feature glass insets that provide a captivating view of the original filtration tank and machinery down below. Similarly, visitors watching high-tech multimedia displays can lean against the plant’s original columns. During the renovations, various security measures were taken, including the installation of nets to protect workers from debris, and the decontamination of several building elements. These measures allowed us to enhance the architectural features of the original building while protecting the surrounding environment. By recovering remnants and materials from demolished buildings adjacent to the filtration plant, the museum has been able to both preserve its historic visual identity and give it a resolutely modern feel.


 

Preserving the social and cultural fabric of a community
BORÉALIS aims to pay tribute to the thousands of lumberjacks, log drivers and workers who devoted their lives to the pulp and paper industry. Preserving our intangible heritage is a key part of our mission, and has shaped both the design and content of our exhibits.