“Projects that seize the imagination such as the gondola lift are possible when we combine our technological inventiveness and creative talent. After rolling up our sleeves alongside Hydro-Québec to create something extraordinary, our team managed to bring the natural elements to life in a rich experience that gives them the entire stage. Hydro Express is the perfect example of a digital experience that moves off the screen.”
Transforming a gondola lift into a canvas for the natural elements is a tall order. lg2 and Hydro-Québec stepped up to the plate together after the Le Massif de Charlevoix ski station launched an RFP to create a brand experience using one of its gondola lifts.
Combining digital, sound and space design, this unique lift immerses passengers in a spectacular experience as it carries them to the mountain’s summit. Hydro Express gives character to the natural forces that power Hydro-Québec’s clean power grid – the water, sun and wind – by giving them a stage on a reflective canvas, to show them off in all their natural glory.
Designed to pique the curiosity of passing skiers, the lift was made invisible by wrapping it in a reflective film so that it merges with the landscape, freeing the entire space to showcase the three elements.
The gondola lift, created from scratch by a digital experience team, houses a 12-minute immersive on-board experience mixing lighting, video and audio narration. Featuring audiovisual projections, luminous installations and an altimeter that triggers the video transitions, Hydro Express is the fruit of creativity and technological innovation, which had to take into account extreme climate conditions (frigid temperatures, humidity, etc.). After several months of design and production, it welcomed its first passengers on December 19 at Le Massif de Charlevoix.
Le Massif de Charlevoix boasts the biggest vertical drop in Canada east of the Rockies. Visited by hundreds of thousands of enthusiastic skiers and boarders each year, the mountain was a top winter destination in 2021. Visitors were able to ride the immersive gondola lift, in addition to discovering it in a reveal video shared online in mid-December. Released on December 11, the video was seen by over a million viewers in just two weeks.
Hydro Express will run for the winter season until mid-April and then for the entire summer season, beginning in June, when the station is visited by mountain bikers and hikers.
Hydro-Québec produces, transports and distributes clean, renewable energy. Its energy is playing a major role in the fight against climate change and the creation of a greener, stronger economy.