The City of Toronto wants to bring more vitality and convenience to its Apartment Neighbourhoods. In March and April, a number of public consultations will be held to incorporate the ideas of community members.
A new zoning type, “Residential Apartment Commercial” (RAC), has been created to provide more amenities and more usable public space in selected neighbourhoods.
Monday March 24th, ERA’s Graeme Stewart will be joining Christopher Hume and guests for a forum on the future of Toronto. The discussion begins at 6:30 pm, Innis Town Hall, 2 Sussex Ave, Toronto. Continue reading…
Throughout the first part of 2014, the Toronto Star is running a series called “Big Ideas“, asking Torontonians to think big about the future of the region. What type of Toronto do we want to create in the years to come?
On Saturday January 18, The East Scarborough Storefront hosted a public design charrette with partners United Way Toronto, Toronto Public Health (TPH), Sustainable TO, Architext, and ERA. Saturday’s discussion focused on TPH’s new program “Healthy Corner Stores,” a project that proposes to give suburban communities better access to fresh produce, and other healthy food options, through convenience stores.
Healthy Corner Stores is part of the growing Tower Renewal initiative, which aims to bring new amenities, healthy choices, and life on the street to Toronto’s tower neighbourhoods. Continue reading…
Alex Bozikovic, Toronto-based writer on architecture and design, recently provided an update on Tower Renewal efforts in the GTA. The article describes the uniquely Canadian and Torontonian inventory of high-rise post-war tower apartment neighbourhoods, and recent efforts by local architects, not-for-profits, and city departments to rethink these neighbourhoods. With aging buildings in need of maintenance and energy efficiency upgrades, and zoning laws that see neighbourhoods underserved and undernourished, Toronto is ready for some practical changes.
Bozikovic is optimistic: By his estimation, the Tower Renewal project can truly transform Toronto for the better.
ERA is pleased to be joining the University of Toronto’s Cities Centre and United Way Toronto for “Closing the Gaps,” a special event exploring how we can continue to work together to support Toronto’s Priority Neighbourhoods. This event will examine the journey since 2005, lessons learned, and steps moving forward. Continue reading…
If there is a character that unites Canada across its many regions, says Shawn Micallef of Spacing, it could well be our huge stock of post-war modernist architecture.
From well-known innovations such as Montreal’s Habitat ’67, Toronto’s CN Tower, or Burnaby’s Simon Fraser University; to the thousands of lower-profile urban and suburban low-, mid-, and high-rise buildings that serve as our residences, universities, schools, malls, factories, and corporate headquarters, Canada is a nation stitched together with modernist fabric. Every urban area, it seems, has its share of brutalist concrete slab towers, curtain-glass minimalist icons, geodesic domes, and long elegant bungalows with exaggerated eaves. Continue reading…
Last week the NFB’s Highrise: One Millionth Tower won a Canada Screen Award for “Original Program Produced for Digital Media, Non-Fiction.” ERA and the Centre for Urban Growth and Renewal (CUG+R) had the pleasure of working with theNFB on this remarkable series, directed by Kat Cizek, which examines the current conditions and future potential of post-war high-rise living around the world. Continue reading…
Monocle Radio recently interviewed ERA’s Graeme Stewart on The Urbanist, a weekly program on the people and ideas that shape urban life. In this week’s edition, Andrew Tuck speaks with Graeme about Toronto’s modernist legacy and the Tower Renewal program.
When: Tues., Dec. 11, 2012, 5:30 to 7:30 PM Where: Innis Town Hall, 2 Sussex Avenue
Recently we shared updates on the ongoing work of the City’s Tower Renewal Office, discussing new research in the field, and engaging with our special guest from Melbourne, Dr. Rebecca Leshinsky. Continue reading…
This autumn, United Way’s Imagine a City blog is hosting a series of guest writers to discuss a number of important programs related to Toronto’s future as a livable city. Recently ERA’s Graeme Stewart blogged on his vision for Tower Neighbourhood Renewal, a program we have been working on in collaboration with partners including the Centre for Urban Growth and Renewal (CUG+R), the City of Toronto, Province of Ontario, Toronto Public Health, and United Way Toronto. Continue reading…
In partnership with United Way Toronto and Toronto Public Health respectively, these reports further research, policy development, and practical strategies to help achieve the potential of Tower Neighbourhood Renewal.
Beginning in early July, six youth from the Kingston-Galloway-Orton Park community were hired for a five-week period by the East Scarborough Storefront to continue work on a series of community-oriented landscape improvements. These features were designed as part of the Community Design Initiative (C.D.I.) program, to which these youth have previously volunteered hundreds of hours.
In the 2012 Quality of Life Issue of Monocle Magazine, ERA’s Graeme Stewart fields a few questions on Toronto’s Tower Renewal Project from Christopher Frey, Monocle correspondent and former Chief Editor for Toronto Standard.
On a recent pleasant day in June, ERA joined green roof expert Atom Cianfarani and a group of community youth to plant a nursery in preparation for the future construction of an unusual green-roof shade structure at the East Scarborough Storefront.
Over the past year, we have been working with the Storefront, Sustainable.TO, ArchiTEXT, various volunteers, and youth participants on an exciting project in the tower neighbourhood of Kingston-Galloway-Orton Park. Soon we begin construction of a dynamic new environment including a kitchen garden and patio, a bee and butterfly garden, a small orchard, and a unique green-roof pavilion or “Sky-o-swale.”
As we have mentioned previously on this blog, ERA Architects is collaborating with ArchiTEXT and Sustainable.TO on the exciting Community.Design.Initiative at East Scarborough Storefront. Over the course of an intensive 19-week mentorship semester we worked with community youth on the design of a kitchen garden and patio, a unique green-roof pavilion, a bee and butterfly garden, and a small orchard. Summer and fall 2012 will see further collaboration with the community as we move toward construction of this dynamic new environment.
ERA Architects and the Toronto Society of Architects present the 2012 Modern Heritage Visiting Lecture, Miles Glendinning: The Hundred Years War: A Century of Mass Housing ‘Campaigns’ Across the World.
Join us May 3rd at the Art and Letters Club at 6:00pm for cocktails and lecture at 6:30. For more information and to RSVP, click here.
Miles Glendinning is the director of the Scottish Centre for Conservation Studies, University of Edinburgh, and chair of Docomomo International Committee on Urbanism. Miles is also the author of the book Tower Block, a history of mass housing in the UK, and Architecture’s Evil Empire, a critical look at contemporary practice.
Matt Galloway with Priti from the NBF’s HIGHRISE, Image Courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada
This week CBC’s Metro Morning is taking to the Kipling strip north of Finch to talk tower renewal, in an area of aging concrete towers that were typical all across Toronto during the early 1950s and ’60s.
On Wednesday, February 15th Graeme Stewart will appear for an interview on Metro Morning’s live broadcast from the Rexdale building at 2667 Kipling. This building is also the focus of the NFB’s HIGHRISE documentary, One Millionth Tower.
The book Concrete Ideas: Material to Shape a City was launched in January, 2012.
Edited by Pina Petricone, the book considers new approaches to concrete architecture by exploring a variety of new technologies and possibilities for the material. First introduced by Pina’s article in Concrete Toronto, the book is a compilation of ideas, articles and interviews assembled over the past several years.
The volume includes exploratory design work by ERA’s Jessie Grebenc, as well as a pair of articles by Graeme Stewart focused on Tower Renewal; one examining the state of concrete tower blocks internationally and the other exploring their potential architectural and urban futures in the Toronto context.
Congratulations to Pina and the publication team on a wonderful and beautiful book.
This week Graeme Stewart discussed ERA’s ongoing work related to Tower Renewal and working with the NFB of their film documentary with the metro morning team. You can listen to his interview in full here.
The Millionth Tower web-based documentary has launched! This weekend the project was featured on the highly-respected Wired.com site, and is already making significant waves re-imagining the way emerging web-based technologies can help to tell highly personal stories in our increasingly connected world. We are all very proud to have been involved – please see the making-of mini-documentary embedded above, and be sure and go check out the interactive documentary..