Our proposal envisions urban infrastructure not as a barrier, but an incubator for community interaction both socially and environmentally. Rather than a final design solution, we acknowledge existing conditions and the continual evolution of urban space. We propose new infrastructure, surfaces and processes that provide a framework that will allow the site to evolve naturally over time, in accordance with the intermediate nature of built environment. Encompassed within the highway infrastructure at York St. and Queens Quay, the site rests unused and claims no identity for itself. Its near waterfront location and growing local residential community gives it access to a number of potential visitors and users yet it remains idle and insignificant.
Instead of competing with a bursting waterfront community, our proposal draws on the reclusive and protective nature of the infrastructure and growing residential community. In the next decade, the site will be utterly surrounded by well over 10,000 new residents with no opportunity for agriculture. Toronto's best kept secret has been the strength of its allotment gardens, so well hidden from public eyes that its 20 gardens and over 2000 plots have gone almost unnoticed. We draw on the overwhelming strength of existing Toronto allotment gardens to propose a new space within the heart of the downtown where multiple social and community events can occur.
Pragmatically, we propose over 50 new plots for cultivation that will generate new social and cultural opportunities for local residents. A tower pavillon is added complete with double skin structure with ledges in between so that over time, residents and visitors alike can contribute plants and flowers that will grow and form a unique local identity for themselves and the city. A large screen facing a portion of the maintained plots space is hung on the tower to activate the park within the concept of “bike-in” theatre during summer months. It is envisioned as a new destination for families, couples and enthusiasts alike within the city which promotes the use of bicycles and new opportunities that blend technology, environment and community. The planning of new pine trees north of the ramp will grow into a natural sound and air filter between the park and the highway. In the meantime, run-off from the highway is collected, treated and used to create a natural barrier along the edges of the off-ramp. A new NW-SE broadwalk connects the two entrances of the site and blurs the boundaries between the variety of functions proposed on site. A skateboard park is added under the infrastructure to provide a sheltered location for new users as new program mitigates the border between city and site.
(From competitor's text)
KG: Beautifully illustrated and a compelling presentation - the best presented scheme.
PH: A beautifully presentes idea. A simple and consistent scheme that has a sophisticated materiality in the bands that serve as the armature of the park, and the relation between these bands and allotment gardens.
(From jury report)
10 scanned / 8 viewable
- Presentation Panel