Niagara College Winery is also the Wine Visitor + Education Centre, which is located among the vines in Niagara-on-the-Lake. The building was designed to showcase and promote the wine industry in Niagara, host wine tourism information services, and provide a home for the College’s academic and wine industry programming. The circular plan of the retail space gives the structure a comfortable presence within this rural community, while offering panoramic views of the surrounding vineyards and escarpment. The highly creative design differs in character to the surrounding wineries and was heavily influenced by the landscape and lines of the escarpment. The exterior uses Niagara Escarpment limestone, a material that reflects the locale. Although not LEED-certified, this structure incorporates high-performance glass, overhead passive sun-shade control, an earth-sheltered crush pad, as well as high-efficiency lighting and HVAC systems.
The Wine Visitor + Education Centre was officially opened in November 2009 during a royal visit from His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales.
*Winner of a 2009 Niagara Community Design Architecture Award*