This scheme involved an inappropriate invocation of pastoral and historical images. The wall to the east is a problem, blocking pedestrian passage and visual connection. It creates boundaries, sub spaces, and by implication sub-cultures. Putting its back to the east, it decimates the value of the real estate east of Victoria. The finger print will be illegible.
This scheme differs significantly from the others, offering a softer, more park-like approach to the square – something more fitting to other locations in the city and not comfortably of the spirit of this energetic, techy, edgy urban space. The rendering, in this case does give an excellent feel for the Intent of the design, something sorely missing In many of the other submissions. Most serious in the problems here, however, is the rise of the site to establish a forbidding wall to the east, cutting off all sense of invitation to the living, working, educational districts beyond.
In its attempt to define "boundaries" and "thresholds", this scheme disconnects the eastern portion of the city from the rest of the site. While the contrasting "pastoral" theme could act as a relief to the commercial surroundings, the three dimensional quality obstructs views and cohesiveness of the whole – developing "upper" and "lower" differentiation to groupings - possibly separating the East from the Wrest. 'While Yonge Street access is clearly given a smooth transition, the plaza is basically non-penetrable from the rest of the perimeter.
However pastoral in its initial appeal, this scheme seemed perversely set upon lifting the platform of the square in such a way as to legislate a one-dimensionality for the space, one axis that ignored the multi-valent qualities of the square. In addition, it raised the platform of the square so precipitously at one end, it tilted the "table" so high, It cancelled Dundas Street almost entirely.
This was the only serious attempt at a pastoral counterpoint to kinetic surroundings and the "thumbprint" is an interesting concept. However, the tilted plane seriously obliterates views From Yonge Street to properties on East side of Victoria Street and creates very problematic edges and "undercroft".
(From competition documentation)