The plan to redesign Queens Quay, the backbone of Toronto’s waterfront revitalization plans, finally has the go-ahead.
The provincial government approved an environmental assessment yesterday for a pedestrian-friendly promenade. Construction of the first phase, an 800-metre section, should begin early next year.
The plan involves cutting the lanes of traffic from four to two, creating a wider boulevard for people to walk on, adding grass in between the streetcar tracks and extending the Martin Goodman Trail through the busiest stretch of Queens Quay.
The TTC’s light rapid transit lines will remain where they are. The three-kilometre project extends from Parliament Street to Spadina Avenue and will be completed in three stages.
An initial $48 million has been set aside by Waterfront Toronto. That will go towards reconfiguring the entire three-kilometre boulevard and building the first section, which is expected to take 18 months. The remaining phases are dependent on funding.
[SOURCE: WEST 8]
A derelict area beneath a series of overpasses in the West Don Lands is going to be transformed into the most extensive park to ever be built under an overpass in Canada, and the first in Toronto.
Located within the West Don Lands – home to the 2015 Pan American Games Athletes’ Village – Underpass Park will cover a total of 1.05 hectares (2.5 acres) under and around the Eastern Avenue and Richmond/Adelaide overpasses, between Cherry Street and Bayview Avenue.
Designed by renowned landscape architects Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg in association with The Planning Partnership, Underpass Park embodies design excellence and is the epitome of innovative urban park design. The design creates a socially-engaging park for community members of all ages and abilities by incorporating public art, recreational space, playful climbing structures and play areas, flexible community space, community gardens, and public gathering places.
The City of Ottawa released the names of the 5 firms that have been short listed from the 21 submissions received to compete for the design of Lansdowne Park’s open space.
The short listed firms are
- Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates – Cambridge, Massachusetts
- Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg – Vancouver, British Columbia
- The SWA Group – Sausalito, California
Partnered with: Corush Sunderland Wright Ltd. (Ottawa), The ARCOP Group, J.L. Richards & Associates (Ottawa), WESA (Ottawa), BuildGreen Solutions, CMS Collaboratie Inc., Professional Environmental Recreation Consultants Ltd. (PERC), PHA Lighting Design, Ned Kahn
- West 8 Urban Design & Landscape Architecture – Toronto, Ontario
Partnered with: Robertson Martin Architects Inc., The Municipal Infrastructure Group (TMIG), Halsall Associates (Ottawa office)
- Williams, Asselin, Ackaoui & Associates Inc. (WAA) – Montreal, Quebec
Partnered with: Éclairage Public Inc., Michel Dallaire Design Industriel Inc., Les Architectes FABG, Vinci Consultants, Linda Covit
With this selection, the work of the design firms will begin promptly with the gathering of information and ideas for the new open space. On Wednesday, February 24 and Thursday, February 25, the selected design firms will be meeting with the City, the National Capital Commission (NCC) and the Parks Canada Agency in a design symposium. Community groups and citizens will be able to learn about the design teams’ background and past projects, and provide comments about what they think should be built in the open space.
For more information go to the Lansdowne Park’s open space website.
[SOURCE: City of Ottawa]
RELATED STORY: Ottawa Citizen – Five firms compete for Lansdowne redesign
Joanne Chianello of the Ottawa Citizen wrote a follow up piece about the Lansdowne Park Competition reporting on the initial meeting between the City, NCC and the design teams.
Competitors where given some advice and on the designs for the site including
……. more than one presenter that proposals needed to be environmentally sustainable, “preserve the historic integrity” of the site (including the Aberdeen pavilion), with an emphasis on “soft over hard landscape.”
Later in the day the design teams presented their previous work to the City and NCC.
Read the full article at the [SOURCE: Ottawa Citizen - Designers told to ensure Lansdowne’s uniqueness]
Waterfront Toronto, together with the Governments of Canada and Ontario and the City of Toronto, officially broke ground recently on Canada’s Sugar Beach, a new park that is transforming a surface parking lot in a former industrial area into Toronto’s second urban beach at the water’s edge.
Located at the foot of Lower Jarvis Street adjacent the Redpath Sugar Factory, this 8500m2 (2 acre) park will be the first public space visitors see as they travel along Queens Quay from the central waterfront. The park’s brightly coloured pink beach umbrellas and iconic candy-striped rock outcroppings will welcome visitors to the new waterfront neighbourhood of East Bayfront.
Designed by renowned Canadian landscape architects and urban designers Claude Cormier Architectes Paysagistes, in association with The Planning Partnership, Canada’s Sugar Beach, builds upon the success of other parks and public spaces along the waterfront by introducing a second urban beach to the area and incorporating the tree-lined promenade in its design.
Spacing.ca a great magazine and blogs from Toronto and Montreal.
Recently on the latest episode of their radio show (Spacing Radio) went underground into Montreal’s sewer system and look at how Vancouver’s is allowing residents to garden green strips and traffic circles (Ed: sort of a controlled guerilla gardening) to think about public spaces differently.
Its an interesting listen and worth checking every two weeks to see what the latest conversation Spacing Radio is having about Canada and its spaces. Also you can subscribe to the podcasts on the iTunes store.
Go to Spacing Radio to listen to the latest episode.