Passers-by do a double take as they approach the south terminus of the Canada Line at Richmond’s Brighouse Station. There, a colony of beavers has appeared atop the last column, and are busy damming up the abrupt end of the train’s guideway.
Hapa, partnering with Contexture Design, won a competition to design and implement a temporary public art piece at this important transportation hub. The big idea is that a Canadian icon, the beaver, is fixing a problem by building a dam. Beavers modify their environment to make it habitable, just as residents of Richmond have been altering the landscape for millennia to make agriculture, industry and settlement possible. Thus, the beaver is an apt analogy for this industrious city, apart from being a widely known national symbol. SkyDam will feature wood reclaimed from Richmond’s beaches and beavers fabricated from weatherproof rigid foam. The piece is expected to be installed in late 2014 or early 2015.

Landscape Architect
Nathan Lee, Contexture Design
City of Richmond Arts, Culture & Heritage Services