Watercourse, commissioned by the Vancouver Art Commission and the Bentall Development Corporation, comprises nearly an entire city block in the heart of downtown Vancouver at a major intersection in the center of the city. In her research of Vancouver’s history, Zimmerman found that in the past, before modern development, streams crossed in front of the new building site and ran down along the site to the harbor just a few blocks north. The water elements in this project refer to that history.
Zimmerman’s idea was to have water flow all along the site from the south to the north end, like the primal streams. The grade changes on the site are significant. The plaza's south end can be accessed at sidewalk level. Mid-block however, numerous stairs are needed to go up to the plaza and the building entrance. The intention was for these stairs to appear to be a bridge over the water flowing alongside the front of the plaza. The artist’s solution resulted in an elegant project that defines the experience of the entire street whether as a pedestrian, or in a vehicle, or as a visitor to the buildings.
The abundantly flowing water and natural cleft granite water walls that constitute Watercourse provide a vibrant counterpart to the geometry of the urban high-rise structures that surround it.
Vancouver, BC Canada
New tower building occupies center city block creating wide plaza with landscaping and fountain. Plaza is edged by block-long water wall with continuous pool
Canadian granite, water, and landscaping
Vancouver Art Commission and Bentall Development Corporation
Architects: Musson Cattell Mackey Partnership;
Fountain engineer: Dr. Gerald Palevsky