The Ursuline School Playground


    Québec, Quebec

  • TYPE

    Landscape Architecture
    Urban Design


    The Ursuline Monastery of Quebec



  • YEAR


photo credit: Dève Média

Located in the heart of Old Quebec, the Ursuline Monastery is one of the few large conventual complexes dating from the establishment of the French colony beginning in the 17th century. This National Historic Site has been dedicated to education since the arrival of a missionary group of Ursuline nuns in 1639 and its built and landscape components bear witness to the different phases of its evolution.

To preserve the integrity of the soil as well as the root systems of the mature trees, some of which trace their origins back to the 17th century, excavation operations were limited to the strict minimum. The design team took advantage of the site’s vertical topography, spreading the various play areas over five levels. Rainwater catchment basins were strategically distributed between the different slopes to absorb rainwater in situ using infiltration and bioretention principles.

Outdoor activity has a considerable positive impact on students’ academic performance and well-being. With this in mind, the design included a variety of spaces for sports activities, relaxation, and socialization. It is now possible for students to run circling the heritage orchard, or climb ropes that bring them closer to the copper roofs of adjacent buildings, making their play and laughter an integral part of the richness of this exceptional site.



Discipline: Landscape & Territories, Categories: Landscape Architecture / Landscape Architecture – Cultural & Institutional Project: Gold Certification, awarded by Grands Prix du Design / 15th Edition


Marie-France Turgeon,
Landscape Architect and Team Leader
T. 514 393-9490

Other consultant(s): 

  • Engineer: Denis Pinard, Genio
  • Supplier:  Atmosphäre
  • Construction Contractor: Les mains vertes du paysage

Contact us

Montreal 1435 St-Alexandre Street, Suite 1000 Montreal, Quebec H3A 2G4 T. 514 393-9490
Ottawa 207 Queen Street, Suite 400 Ottawa, Ontario K1P 6E5 T. 613 518-2165
Toronto 75 Sherbourne St, Suite 503 Toronto, Ontario, M5A 2P9 T. 647 723-2030
Quebec City 1650 de la Canardière, Suite 205 Quebec, Quebec, G1J 1C9 T. 514 393-9490
PANAQ Design Iqaluit 3605 Bill Mackenzie Lane P.O. Box 2170 Iqaluit, Nunavut X0A 0H0 T. 867 979-2055
EVOQ Stratégies