The Esplanade Frontenac constitutes a remarkable point of interest in the center of Sherbrooke. The Frontenac Street development project consisted in revitalizing old Sherbrooke by keeping an urban, architectural, artistic, environmental and event-driven approach for down-town of Sherbrooke.
The creation of a new urban area required demolition of the old Gabr building, built in 1954; the removal of many piers overhanging the Magog River, the installation of terraces on Frontenac Street, between Dufferin Street and Wellington Street North. The plan included planting trees, installing lighting and flags, the creation of a pedestrian access close to the river banks and the creation of the Place des Moulins.
The development of Place des Moulins and the installation of a sculpture at the end of Wellington Street North are a part of the Esplanade Frontenac.
This space leaves considerable room for contemporary art. The sculpture, entitled Une célébration… de l’eau à la lumière (a celebration … from water to light), is signed by artist and architect Melvin Charney. The new street and sidewalk layout of the Esplanade Frontenac improved traffic and pedestrian geometry while allowing merchants to take advantage of outside terraces.
The sculptures are visible at night thanks to a carefully programmed lighting system. For security reasons, the underside of the slab, river-side, are also lighted.
The light pollution norms were taken into account with the help of Mont-Mégantic’s Astro Lab. Today, the Esplanade Frontenac, including Place des Moulins, is seen as an exceptional cultural and environmental place highly appreciated by Sherbrooke residents and tourists.