Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation Division have launched a six-week design competition to produce bold and innovative park designs for York Street Park and Rees Street Park in Toronto’s Central Waterfront. Both parks will be the two newest additions to Toronto waterfront’s growing collection of beautiful, sustainable and popular public open spaces along Queens Quay.
The first stage of the design competition launched in February 2018 with a Request for Qualification (RFQ), which invited creative design teams to submit statements of qualifications to produce designs for the two parks. More than 40 international design teams submitted proposals outlining their qualifications.
In May 2018, ten teams were shortlisted to participate in the next stage of the design competition. Five teams have been assigned to each park and have responded to a Request for Proposals (RFP) that calls for innovative designs that will serve the diverse needs of local residents, office workers and visitors.
During the six-week design competition (RFP period), each team has produced conceptual designs based on Design Briefs for York and Rees Street Parks that outline the unique site conditions and required design elements. Copies of the design briefs for York Street Park and Rees Street Park are available here. Proposals are on public exhibition at Toronto City Hall until July 16th, 2018 and online until July 24th, 2018. During this time, input will be solicited from the public, local stakeholders, and technical staff. We encourage all Torontonians to review the designs and provide feedback on the proposals.
Following the public exhibition of the design proposals and the public comment period, the competition jury will be convened in the early fall to recommend a preferred design proposal for each park. The jury consists of leaders in design and art: Jane Hutton, Assistant Professor, University of Waterloo; Janna Levitt, Principal, LGA Architectural Partners; Michael Van Valkenburgh, Principal, Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates; Neil Hrushowy, Principal Urban Designer, City and County of San Francisco, and Matthew Hyland, Director/Curator of Oakville Galleries.
Following the jury’s recommendation, Waterfront Toronto will award design contracts to the two winning design teams and begin design development of the parks. Construction of the York Street Park is expected to commence first in 2019, with Rees Street Park following in 2020.
Ten design teams have been shortlisted to participate in the design competition for York Street Park and Rees Street Park. Five teams were assigned to each park and have responded to Requests for Proposals that call for bold and innovative design proposals for both parks.