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The Simcoe WaveDeck, by Designers West 8 and DTAH, is one in a series of uniquely Canadian urban docks, and is as artistic as it is functional. Located just west of Simcoe Street, the wooden wavedeck features an informal public amphitheatre-style space with impressive curves that soar as high as 2.6 metres above the lake.

Inspired by the shorelines of Ontario’s Great Lakes, the Simcoe WaveDeck created new public space at the water’s edge by replacing a narrow sidewalk with a grand waterside gathering place. Its whimsical and dynamic design has made the wavedeck one of the waterfront’s most interesting new public spaces. People of all ages are enjoying views of the harbour from its 30 metre-long backless bench, using its steps as a place to eat lunch and taking pictures of themselves sliding on its graceful curves.

Photos of construction activity during the building of the Simcoe WaveDeck.

The 650 square metre structure is made of yellow glulam cedar and Ipe wood ([ee-pay], also known as Brazilian Walnut or Ironwood).  The wavedeck’s two large swells feature slender stainless steel railings that follow the undulations of the waves in the deck. These railings are designed to differentiate the curved portions of the deck and help visitors negotiate the slopes.

Simcoe WaveDeck looking south east.

In addition to the railings the wavedeck includes several other health and safety features including antislip components at the edge of each step and a visual white band to provide contrast and help mark the edge of steps. To provide traction on the slopes, strips of abrasive material called carborandum inserts were used and the deckboards were angled to provide extra traction on the steepest slopes.

Simcoe WaveDeck from the water at night looking north east

In the evening, the deck is lit from below with colourful LED fixtures mounted to the timber structure. These colourful lights cast a glow from beneath the deck creating a beautiful effect on the water and highlight the architecture of the wavedeck.

"Click to enlarge"
Simcoe WaveDeck at sunset looking north west from the water

Children sliding on the wavedeck

Railing detail on Simcoe WaveDeck.

Railing on the highest point of the Simcoe WaveDeck

View of the swells on the Simcoe WaveDecks looking west

Simcoe WaveDeck looking northwest

Simcoe WaveDeck from the water.

View of the two largest swells on the Simcoe WaveDeck looking west from the water.

Close up of the largest two largest swells on the Simcoe WaveDeck looking east.


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