Architect Douglas Cardinal honoured for iconic work

Red Deer-raised architect Douglas Cardinal is being honoured on his 80th birthday by the Canadian Museum of History, whose iconic structure he designed.

Red Deer-raised architect Douglas Cardinal is being honoured on his 80th birthday by the Canadian Museum of History, whose iconic structure he designed.

Museum officials are naming the building’s principal event and meeting room the Douglas J. Cardinal Salon.

“Our museum and all Canadians owe a great debt of gratitude to Mr. Cardinal for his architectural treasure, which has graced the nation’s capital for almost three decades,” said Mark O’Neill, the museum’s president and CEO.

The Ottawa building, originally called the Museum of Civilization when it opened in 1989, is built in Cardinal’s signature style of undulating walls and flowing lines. The architect wanted it to look as if it was “sculpted by the winds, the rivers, the glaciers.”

The museum, with two adjoining buildings, got international acclaim for its elegant design and striking setting, right across the river from Parliament Hill.

Cardinal is now assisting the museum with the development of the new Canadian History Hall, which is described as being the largest and most comprehensive exhibition about Canada’s history ever created.

“Working on the design of the Canadian History Hall allows me to incorporate further ideas that were part of my original design,” said Cardinal, who feels honoured to have his role recognized in producing the national museum.