It’s now official: The Biodôme de Montréal will be reopening to the public on August 31, 2020, and Espace pour la vie is inviting everyone to book their tickets for the reopening celebration now. In this iconic space with its magnificent architecture revealed once again, a revitalized, multisensory, far more immersive experience awaits as you make your way through the five ecosystems of the Americas. You’ll enjoy dramatic vantage points on the ecosystems from a brand-new light-filled mezzanine, and discover totally redesigned educational programs focused on inspiring us to take action to protect biodiversity. You’ll also have an opportunity to learn more about what our Biodôme crews do behind the scenes to care for the animals and ensure their well-being. This is one reopening you definitely won’t want to miss!
“After more than two years of work, we have our Biodôme back—more beautiful, more relevant and more informative than ever! Thirty years after it opened, the Biodôme is still playing a leading role in showcasing our ecosystems and reminding us just how fragile and invaluable biodiversity is. For a year now, I have had the great honour of serving as the ICLEI’s Global Ambassador for Local Biodiversity and working to make the protection of biodiversity a global issue that everyone can get behind. One way to rally people around this crucial issue is to show, concretely, what biodiversity is and what it provides us with on a daily basis. And that’s exactly what the Biodôme does. A visit to the Biodôme reminds us just how lucky we are to live in a place with such rich biodiversity and underscores the enormous responsibility we have to protect and preserve it,” said Montréal mayor Valérie Plante.
“The Biodôme migration is much more than just a facelift. It’s a migration in our way of viewing our relationship with nature. The current pandemic is showing us, once again, just how much we need nature, but also to what degree we have become disconnected from it,” said Charles-Mathieu Brunelle, director of Espace pour la vie. “Reconnecting with nature, appreciating it, and getting to know and understand it better are the first steps in what is becoming a crucial movement to protect it. Our objective is to inspire as many people as possible to join us in this movement,” he added.
Right from the very start, you’ll be struck by the splendour of the original building. You’ll want to slow down and gaze up at the vaulted ceiling, suffused with natural light. Then you’ll notice the graceful curves and elegant simplicity of the huge white wall that now envelops the ecosystems. Elegant simplicity that is an intentional contrast with the living ecosystems, highlighting their beauty and creating a sort of decompression chamber between the urban environment and this oasis of nature. To make the experience even more immersive and multisensory, the designers have rethought every aspect, including access to the ecosystems: you’ll hear and smell before you enter and see!
WHAT’S NEW IN THE NATURAL HABITATS
There’s something new in each of the five ecosystems. For instance, the treetop view of the Tropical Rainforest reveals some beautiful natural features that had been virtually invisible until now. The Gulf of St. Lawrence, with its salt sea air and swooping birds, can be discovered from the new walkways leading to the mezzanine. In the Laurentian Maple Forest, there’s now a new perspective on the lynx habitat. And the new tunnel and wall of ice of the Sub-Antarctic Islands ecosystem is guaranteed to give you goosebumps!
A MOBILE APP TO MAKE YOUR VISIT MORE IMMERSIVE
The Biodôme has boldly decided to replace its traditional information panels with a brand-new mobile app that offers a variety of ways to give users the impression of being immersed in nature. With the app in hand, you’ll be able to wander around as if you really were in nature, while having a wealth of information on whatever interests you at your fingertips.
Espace pour la vie is wagering that this new adventure will spur its visitors to think more about, and change, their relationship with nature and biodiversity. Isn’t it true that we protect what we love?
THE DESIGNERS BEHIND THIS PHENOMENAL TRANSFORMATION
As a result of an international architectural competition organized by Espace pour la vie and the design office of the Ville de Montréal, the Biodôme Migration project was awarded to the following consortium: