Brewery at The Forks
Studio: 5468796 Architecture
Project: Brewery at The Forks
Location: Winnipeg, Canada
Year: work in progress
Credit: 5468796 Architecture
The Brewery at The Forks is part addition, part renovation of a new craft brewery operating out of Winnipeg’s historic Forks Market. A thriving transportation hub in the early 1900s, the site was home to the Great Northern Railway Stable Building and the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Stable Building before being joined by an atrium and a series of bridges in the late 1980s, creating what is now known as The Forks Market.
Drawing inspiration from the original structure and its processes, a complimentary form was explored for a full-production brewery. Prescribed by surrounding site constraints, it is compressed on a small footprint, the three key functions of the authentic production process stacked vertically to create an archetypal design reminiscent of early gravity-fed breweries.
The process begins on the roof deck of the new structure, travels down the top floor, and is then transferred to the adjacent brewhouse. Aging, the final phase of production, occurs on the main floor in five fermentation tanks. At ground level, the brewmasters and public interact through tasting and testing, exposed to the brewing process without interrupting production.
Drawing on the site’s industrial past, the addition interlocks with the existing building at each level of production, articulated geometrically as a series of cogs and reflecting the aesthetic of a machine in constant operation.