Historic site come alive
Glass Public Art
Type of Glass
Established in 1875 by the North-West Mounted Police, Fort Calgary is located at the confluence of the Bow and Elbow rivers in Calgary, Alberta. In 1974, the site was purchased by the City of Calgary and reopened as a historic site and museum. In recent years, the Calgary Municipal Land Corporation has made changes to transform and rejuvenate the area surrounding Fort Calgary. As part of this, five red pillars were built on the edge of the East Village, known as the Fort Calgary Sentinels.
The striking red Sentinels link Calgary's East Village together with Fort Calgary. When developing the design, the CMLC's focus was on cohesiveness and community, "we wanted to look at how to treat the edges of the East Village, for a seamless transition between that urban space and park space that is Fort Calgary." states Susan Veres, VP of Marketing and Communications.
The striking red glass of the Fort Calgary Sentinels is hard to miss as you pass through Calgary's East Village. The five pillars each represent a historical figure significant to the Calgary area.
Glass In Action
The five pillars are hard to miss, with the tallest pillar, which is designed to represent Fort Calgary, standing at 28 feet tall. The remaining four pillars are 15 feet tall, each representing a historical figure significant to the Calgary area, including: decorated North-West Mounted Police Captain Deane, Chief Crowfoot, Calgary Alderman John Ayer, and Colonel Macleod, all Calgary pioneers and pillars of the community, represented as such.
Goldray Glass worked alongside Calgary-based, Heavy Industries to bring the sentinel design to life. The first design challenge was to match the iconic red of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), while adding imagery and quotes from the people the pillars represent. To achieve this, Goldray's Technographic Interlayer process was used. With this process, the vibrant red color and images were printed onto a high-resolution interlayer which was then laminated between two glass lites.
Laminating the glass adds durability, making it strong enough to withstand the elements, a feature that is especially important in Calgary, a city known for it's extreme temperature changes. Heavy Industries notes that the finished product "Is virtually weather proof. This means this type of glass project also has a propensity for longevity.”
To complete the design, each pillar is backlit, making them both artistic and functional as the light they provide makes the area brighter, safer, and welcoming, no matter the time of day. Tourists and locals alike are drawn to the Fort Calgary Sentinels public art project. The vibrant color and design beckon for a closer look, while the text and imagery piques their interest and allows for a greater appreciation of the importance of the site.
Calgary Municipal Land Corporation
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