A New Look at Parliament Hill

Carleton’s CIMS lab unveils new virtual reality experience

People who pop into the VR Kiosk — a shipping container at the visitor centre across the street from Parliament Hill — will be able to experience a new virtual reality tour that shows the evolution of the built environment of Parliament Hill, from the early years of Barrack Hill and the construction of the Parliament Buildings in the early 1860s to the fire and reconstruction of Centre Block from 1916 to 1928 and the contemporary tools being used in the ongoing rehabilitation of the Parliamentary Precinct.

“Evolution of the Hill,” which launches on Monday, July 10, joins four other virtual reality experiences developed by the Carleton Immersive Media Studio (CIMS) in partnership with Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC).

The other VR tours focus on the Peace Tower, the relocation of the Senate to the Government Conference Centre to accommodate the 10-year rehabilitation of the Centre Block, the relocation of the House of Commons to the West Block courtyard during the reno, and the digitization of Parliament, which explores how laser scanning, photogrammetry and Building Information Models (BIMs) are used to plan and manage rehabilitation projects.

All five VR views give visitors the opportunity to experience spaces that are inaccessible, iconic, historic — or in development — and provide information on the ongoing and planned Parliament Hill rehabilitation projects.

The long-running collaboration between CIMS and PSPC is built around the lab’s expertise in digital heritage conservation and includes a range of projects, such as a virtual tour of the Senate and BIMs of the Centre and West blocks.