Rapides-Farmer Generating Station

A magnificent, historic generating station just a few minutes from Gatineau.

The following content is not accessible

Nearby and natural

In the heart of Gatineau, just 6 km from Hull, lies Rapides-Farmer generating station, a landmark of Outaouais history. This gem of a power plant has been in operation since 1927. Your tour will unlock the secrets of the river, first used to transport lumber and then to generate hydroelectricity.

Go right inside a generating unit and look straight up to admire a 160-t rotor in action! You’ll be astonished by the unique facilities, including a weir that discharges water into the former bed of the Rivière Gatineau.

Fascinating and historical!

Top of page

Did you know?

Detour

Rapides-Farmer generating station was built on the East bank of the Gatineau, then the river was diverted to flow through the turbines.

1,400,000 bricks

And that’s not all! Building Rapides-Farmer generating station also took 2,750 t of reinforcing and structural steel, along with 103,000 m3 of concrete.

Like a bathtub

Rapides-Farmer hasn’t got a spillway. Instead, it has a weir, which automatically lets out excess water once it reaches a certain level, like the overflow in a bathtub.

Top of page

Question from: François, Gatineau

Answer from: Vanessa, tour guide at Rapides-Farmer generating station

What’s the name of the generating station you can see from Rapides-Farmer?
That’s Chelsea generating station, about a kilometre away. As a matter of fact, they were both built at the same time.

Question from: Lise, Cantley

Answer from: Gabrielle, tour guide at Rapides-Farmer generating station

Who built the generating station?
The Gatineau Power Company built it in 1926–27. It only took 18 months.

Question from: Jason, Ottawa

Answer from: Vanessa, tour guide at Rapides-Farmer generating station

Why is one of the generators different from the rest?
Unit 4 is smaller, because it’s newer. By the time it was installed, the technology had evolved so that a more compact piece of equipment could generate the same amount of power.

Follow the guides!

Our guides know what they’re talking about. They’ve been specially trained to make sure you have a rewarding experience that meets your expectations. They’ll be delighted to tailor your tour to match the goal you have in mind and the profile of your group.

Our interactive educational tours are full of facts and most of them are fun for the entire family. Don’t be shy about asking questions: our guides are very knowledgeable. Your curiosity will be satisfied!

Ask a question Top of page

School tours

School tours

Tours of Hydro-Québec generating stations and interpretation centres are an ideal way for your students to gain a very practical understanding of electricity. Our lively guides will soon get everyone interested in the history of Hydro-Québec, the different energy sources, electricity and hydropower generation.

A fun, free, educational field trip!

Schedule and practical information

Maximum number of visitors

60 people, including students and escorts. We form a second group when there are more than 30 people.

Supervision

These are the recommended ratios for adults accompanying groups:

  • Ages 9 to 12: 1 adult for every 1 to 10 pupils
  • Ages 13 to 17: 1 adult for every 1 to 20 pupils

For safety’s sake, teachers and accompanying adults must remain with their charges throughout the tour and help the guides.

Pre-visit preparation

Age-appropriate tours

Tours of Hydro-Québec facilities are an excellent complement to the Québec Education Program. They reinforce the acquisition and development of several competencies in the areas of math, science and technology, social science and more.

Broad Areas of Learning

  • Environmental awareness and consumer rights and responsibilities

Areas of learning and competencies

  • Science and Technology: Competency 1, 2 and 3

Essential knowledge related to competencies

  • Material World: Energy, Forces and Motion, Systems and interaction, Appropriate language
  • Earth and Space: Matter, Energy, Appropriate language

Broad Areas of Learning

  • Personal and career planning
  • Environmental awareness and consumer rights and responsibilities

Areas of learning and competencies

  • Science and Technology: Competency 1, 2 and 3
  • Social Sciences: Competency 1 and 2

Essential knowledge related to competencies

  • Material World: Energy, Forces and Motion, Systems and interaction, Appropriate language
  • Earth and Space: Energy, Appropriate language
  • Knowledge related to the organization of a society in its territory: Québec society around 1980
  • Knowledge related to change in a society and its territory: Québec society between 1905 and 1980

Broad Areas of Learning

  • Personal and career planning
  • Environmental awareness and consumer rights and responsibilities

Areas of learning and competencies

  • Science and Technology: Competency 2 and 3
  • Social Sciences: Competency 1

Topics

  • Gatineau generating stations and managing a watershed
  • Geography and history of the region
  • Lumber industry, river driving, developers
  • History of the power station
  • Reservoir and run-of-river generating stations
  • Hydroelectric power generation
  • How a generating unit works
  • Tour of a turbine shaft

Complements the following programs

  • Science
  • Humanities
  • Engineering programs
  • Industrial electronics programs

Topics

  • Gatineau generating stations and managing a watershed
  • Geography and history of the region
  • Lumber industry, river driving, developers
  • History of the power station
  • Reservoir and run-of-river generating stations
  • Hydroelectric power generation
  • How a generating unit works
  • Tour of a turbine shaft

We tailor the tour to suit your needs.

Topics

  • Gatineau generating stations and managing a watershed
  • Geography and history of the region
  • Lumber industry, river driving, developers
  • History of the power station
  • Reservoir and run-of-river generating stations
  • Hydroelectric power generation
  • How a generating unit works
  • Tour of a turbine shaft
Top of page
A truly wonderful tour. Our guide, Vanessa, was super interesting and really enthusiastic.

Visitors’ comments

Read more comments
Thank you. Very good guide and great tour. The children learned a lot.
Super tour. Thank you very much.
Well explained for everyone in the family.
Really great tour. Bravo to the guide.
Great tour. It’s important to keep these facilities accessible.

Schedule and practical information

Schedule and practical information

Admission

Free

Schedule

Open from May 22 to August 27, 2017

From May 22 to June 23, 2017

Monday to Friday:
9:30 a.m., 11:15 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 2:45 p.m.

From June 24 to August 27, 2017

Wednesday to Sunday:
9:30 a.m., 11:15 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 2:45 p.m

Reservations required.

Length of tour

90 minutes

Top of page

What you should know

ID card

ID required

Visitors aged 18 years and over must present official photo ID (medicare card, driver’s licence or passport) to tour a facility.

Free guided tours

Tours are led by qualified, dynamic guides.

Time of arrival

Tours start at set times. You should be there 15 minutes in advance.

Age

For safety reasons, tours are not recommended for children younger than two.

Clothing

Flat, closed shoes are recommended.

Accessibility

Tours are on foot and include some stairs.

Notice to pacemaker users

Notice to pacemaker users

The electromagnetic fields in power plants may disrupt pacemaker operation. As a precaution, pacemaker users will not be allowed during the part of the guided tour that takes place in the generating station.

Top of page

Services

  • Free parking
  • Restrooms

Information and reservations

1 800 365-5229

E-mail

Reservations required at all times for groups of 10 or more.

Top of page

How to get there

Rapides-Farmer Generating Station

2740 St-Louis
Gatineau, Québec
J8V 3X6


The following content is not accessible

Other sights in the area


To find out about other activities or plan your trip to the area, go to QuébecOriginal.com.

Top of page