Select the links below to view images and brief descriptions of the final design proposals submitted by the four short-listed design teams:
Plant Architect & Shore Tilbe Irwin
Select an image for a larger view of the design proposal from Plant Architect & Shore Tilbe Irwin
||The Queen Street forecourt of the restaurant
||The new peace garden
|The theatre terrace and skate pavilion
||Aerial view at night
Nathan Phillips Square has always acted as an agora, the ancient Athenian place of public and political exchange, but also claims the dual functions of theatre, the place of focused gathering, and square. The porch (stoa) that surrounded the Athenian agora, provided a programmed threshold between the square's openness and the adjacent private spaces for intimate debate. Viljo Revell's multileveled scheme was bereft of this crucial programmatic support.
AGORA/THEATRE clearly defines the interior space of theatre and square - a theatre for the city - where planned and unforeseen events are encouraged, against a vast forested perimeter of intimate programmed green rooms:
Open the Square
The openness of Nathan Phillips Square is the source of its democratic power. By removing the clutter, the Square is left as a space of pure potential for a vast range of interactions and events. A new stage will act as a fourth element added to the existing composition of iconic elements - Council Chamber, Freedom Arches, and Ceremonial Ramp - while the surface of the Square will be animated by light, "disappearing" fountains, and seating.
Program a porous perimeter with green rooms
The new forested perimeter (increasing trees by 30% - by 60% on the perimeter) is a container for a host of programmes: the Queen Street forecourt, Peace Garden, Treetop restaurant, entry/bike pavilion, playground and chip trucks. A unique soil support system allows for maximum paving, trees, and a storm water sponge to ensure a healthy forest legacy.
Activate the stoa as a threshold
New trees will provide shade and enclosure, new pavings, benches, linear gardens, and openings provide a rich texture and connectivity between upper and lower walkways, the Square, and the revitalized podium. New elevators, stairs, and ramps will double the connections between the levels of the Square.
Organize the existing architecture to bridge the threshold
The stage is reconceived as a permanent public landscape acting as a stair and terrace, connecting the walkways to the Square, serving as bleachers for small performances and a stage for larger ones. The skate pavilion, restaurant and entry kiosk all plug into the multi-levels.
Plant Architect Inc., Toronto
Shore Tilbe Irwin & Partners, Toronto
Peter Lindsay Schaudt Landscape Architecture, Inc., Chicago
Adrian Blackwell, Toronto
- Blackwell Bowick Partnership Limited (structural engineering, Toronto)
- Blanche Lemko van Ginkel (historical guidance, Toronto)
- Crossey Engineering Ltd. (integrated mechanical and lighting systems design, Toronto)
- Enermodal Engineering Limited (environmental and sustainability design and integration, Kitchener, Ontario)
- Theatre Projects Consultants (theatre consultant, S. Norwalk, Connecticut)
- Vermeulens Inc. (quantity surveying, Richmond Hill, Ontario)