Select the links below to view images and brief descriptions of the final design proposals submitted by the four short-listed design teams:
Rogers Marvel Architects, Ken Smith Landscape Architect, duToit Allsopp Hillier
Select an image for a larger view of the design proposal from Rogers Marvel Architects, Ken Smith Landscape Architect, duToit Allsopp Hillier.
||From Queen St near glass
This is the square
A town square is not just a stage for city hall; it is the intersection of all that happens in a city. We believe that the experience of the Square should be defined by the buildings that surround it: Nathan Philips Square is not only a municipal precinct; it is the heart of Toronto.
Our proposal for Nathan Phillips Square seeks to:
- Expand the frame of the square to engage its surroundings
- Intensify use of the street level hardscape while activating the upper level with landscape and passive recreation
- Transform roofs to roof gardens, introducing native planting and linking upper and lower spaces with a wooded hill.
We achieve these goals through the following interventions:
Residual Green becomes City Green
The planted areas and support buildings that currently occupy the square's West side have been consolidated and re-shaped into a new wooded hill. On top of the hill, a grove of trees and the prospect offer a look out on the Plaza's activity. At the plaza level, this constructed landscape houses skate rental concessions and Plaza-related storage along with new areas for restaurants and performance support. A fritted glass "ribbon" creates the hill's plaza-level face, providing a screened shelter from the Plaza's cold winter winds or hot summer sun. By consolidating new and existing support spaces under the wooded hill the paved areas of the plaza are expanded to accommodate public events.
Bring the city into the square
The Plaza's elevated walkway was conceived as part of a "Plus 15" network throughout the city that was never constructed. Rather than eliminate it, we propose to capitalize on the elevated walkway's best qualities.
By pulling the east walkway away from the building, we give the ceremonial ramp and the prow of the plinth a new public presence opening the square to Albert and Bay Streets. A new grand stair brings Bay Street pedestrians up onto the elevated walkway. By extending the plaza paving pattern across Queen Street the life of the street and adjacent building are brought into the square.
Rogers Marvel Architects (New York), Ken Smith Landscape Architect (New York), duToit Allsopp Hillier (Toronto) - Team Members
- Buro Happold (systems engineer, New York)
- Dan Euser Water Architecture (water systems, Richmond Hill, Ontario)
- Hanscomb Limited (cost consultant, Toronto)
- Goldsmith Borgal & Company (heritage consultant, Toronto)
- L'Observatoire International (lighting designer, New York)
- 2x4 (graphics & way finding designer, New York)