In 1964 Moriyama & Teshima received the commission to design a science centre to celebrate Canada’s 100th birthday. At that time “participatory” and “hands-on” were new and, to many, highly suspicious words; science museums were still reliant on labels and display cases.
In order to involve large numbers of people in the process of learning, we tried to convey the excitement felt by scientists as they break through to new discovery. Inside and outside, the building attempts to engage all senses and encourage exploration and physical participation.
Exhibit halls are designed to human scale, and intermediate areas provide spaces where visitors can admire the magnificent surrounding landscape, reflect on their experience, and anticipate what lies ahead.
Conceived in the form of a city, the Centre respects the existing trees and configuration of land table, valley, and ravine. Throughout, vistas of the natural landscape are constant reminders that, despite the emphasis on science and technology, nature remains the basis of life.