Project Description


Interactive Public Space
Collaboration with Rachel Tardif
June 2016

Submission for CoLLaboratoire’s international competition “Solar Powered Bus Shelter + Interactive & Educational”, for which we won the 3rd place.

The solar powered shelter we designed has two configurations, and is very slowly switching from one configuration to the other, according to how much solar energy it receives. On sunny days, the shelter expands and on cloudy days it contracts. The solar panels which power it are planted in the field next to it, and can be manually rotated, by students passing by, to face the sun at all times of the day, such as to allow the structure to store a maximum of energy. The purpose of this interaction is two-fold. First, it presents the expansion of our environment (the shelter) as dependant upon nature’s cooperation (sunlight). Second, it implies that if we want our environment to flourish, we must help and empower nature to do so for us (directing the solar panels). Indeed, nature’s role in the molding of our environment cannot be bypassed. By doing this, we are revisiting the industrial era belief that man can subject nature to its will, and overturning the play of power between man and nature.



To respond to a mandate such as creating a bus stop that will encourage a dialog around climate change, we decided to study and mimic the narratives of climate change. We naturally thought of the melting of the ice caps and observed how the changes they undergo might be invisible over a short period, but very obvious and detrimental over a period of months and years. This is true of the entire phenomenon of climate change. We thus wanted this invisible but certain change to be the building principle of our shelter. As such, it’s always undergoing micro-variations that people only see clearly after a few hours or days.

Expanding Roof

The expansion of the roof responds to the amount of sunlight captured by the solar panels which can be turned by passers-by to face the sun at all times of the day. This reflects the narrative of climate change engages students in the role they play in the expansion and vitality of their environment.

Weekend Market Place

Since the bus schedule hours are reduced in the summer time and inoperational on weekends, student communities and clubs can use the site as a stage to host shows, events, sales and markets. Since the open structure expands like a stage, facing the patch of grass next to the Oscar-Peterson Hall, it becomes an ideal spot for
hosting gatherings, and having the crowd watching from that section of the Loyola campus.

F I N A L   P R O P O S A L