For many of us, public access to clean drinking water is a gift we take for granted. To celebrate the underappreciated public good, Raumlaborberlin built the Fountain House, a grass-covered wooden structure centered on a small fountain in Montreal. Built for the city's La Biennale de Montreal: L'avenir Festival, the Fountain House is a modern interpretation of a watering hole and provides a variety of interactive ways to observe, play with, and appreciate the public infrastructure of water.
Located at the heart of Montreal on the corner of Sainte Catherine and Clark, the grass-covered Fountain House reactivates a neglected open space in the inner city using a lively spot of color. Raumlaborberlin carved a circle colonnade into the structure’s twelve sides to provide access to the central fountain and to give the large structure a sense of lightness. A flight of stairs leads visitors up to the roof, which offers a 360-degree panoramic view of the city.
A submerged pool sits at the center of the structure and visitors are invited to drink, observe, hear or play with the water. A pump brings water to a small rooftop well, from which a thin and musical stream of water falls to the pool below. Nozzles embedded in the sides of the structure create clouds of mist. The Fountain House also celebrates life with its growing facade, which comprises a thin soil skin planted with grasses and fungi.
Images via Raumlaborberlin