Sunday, November 1, 2015

Indoor Atriums in the City (Ottawa)

Here is a list of great atriums to visit in the winter to get your kick of green and light (especially if it's a sunny day!):

(Temporarily Closed) Sunlife Financial building (99 Bank Street)

There are many entrances to this atrium: through the Starbucks, from all street sides including O'Conner and from its official address on 99 Bank.  Depending on where you enter head towards the center where you'll find a large courtyard area including an elevated spot with a waterfall which gives visitors a great respite from the usual city experience (noise, grey, packed sidewalks).  Great retreat in the winter but it does get busy during lunch hours.

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Minto Place atrium (407 Laurier Avenue W.)

This indoor spot is well-known for its green living wall.  A popular place with the downtown lunch crowd (so again it can be quite busy mid-day) who likely come for the light and airy peaceful space.  Come on a sunny day as you will get the maximum benefit from the vast glass ceiling and enjoy the large tropical trees placed strategically around the courtyard.  There is access from all sides of the buildings and the atrium is found in the west end.

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C.D. Howe building (240 Sparks Street)

Inside this popular seventies mall (who remembers shopping at "240 Sparks" and/or going to the movie theatre here?) you can find a small courtyard downstairs with tables nestled beside living trees.  It has undergone a renovation in the past couple of years but still includes both the "Bright" Tree Court and a "Relaxing" Waterfall court.  Some of the anchor stores have moved out including L.C.B.O. and Holtz.  There is access from all sides including Queen Street, Bank Street and even along the Sparks Street mall.  It also has a green roof that has been opened to the public on past Doors Open events.

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What other favourite green spots do you have in Ottawa to visit in the winter?

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