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Ismaili Centre–Prayer Hall Glass Roof

Toronto, ON

Located in a 6.8-hectare park, the Ismaili Centre symbolizes the Ismaili community's enduring presence in Canada. This complex includes a mosque, a community centre, and shared underground parking with the neighboring Aga Khan Museum, reflecting themes of geometry and light in its design.

The building's standout feature is its prayer hall roof. This pyramidal structure covers a 900 sq m area without columns and peaks at 21m. The roof consists of two insulated glass layers, separated by sloping steel trusses. All panels are translucent, save for a clear strip facing Mecca. Inside, the glass offers soft, natural illumination, casting subtle shadows of the internal framework. Externally, when illuminated, the roof appears as a luminous crystal-like structure.

Utilizing a BIM approach was pivotal for the roof system, integrating ventilation, lighting, and sprinklers between the glass layers. The inner surface's intricate design accounted for function, load-specific structural depths, and individual glass panel fabrication. Every element was digitally modeled in CATIA, which later served as the contract document for detailing, manufacturing, and assembly.

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