Architect: NADAAA with Adamson Associates Architects and ERA Architects
Owner: The University of Toronto/ The Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Project site: Historic structure or district
Building program type(s): Education – College/University (campus-level)
The renovation and expansion of One Spadina Crescent for the University of Toronto’s John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design (DFALD) embodies a holistic approach to sustainable design. The project focused on the context of the city and dynamic use patterns over time as opposed to focusing exclusively on static accreditation frameworks. The project strove to distinguish itself in utilization efficiency, energy/water/material efficiency, properly insulated building fabric, indoor environmental quality, landscape, and urbanity. Most important, the project anticipated the dynamic nature of design education and technology through its flexibility and resilience. The project objectives were twofold: (1) rehabilitate the landscape, historic Knox College architecture, and urban significance of Spadina Crescent (2) demonstrate DFALD’s objective of overt sustainability through the deployment of materials and systems to accommodate a program for studio space, workshops, classrooms, offices, a library, a cafe, a gallery, an auditorium, a Living Lab, a Fab Lab, a public amphitheater, and an event terrace. Design strategies were multifaceted to address environmental, economic, and social values. One example of this is the new, dynamic ceiling on the third floor of the new addition. Using the cantilevered structural logic of the Firth of Forth Bridge, the ceiling of the studio is shaped to integrate daylighting, hydrological control, and structural optimization, creating a desirable space that engages the senses while simultaneously saving energy and water and serving as a pedagogical tool. For years, many initiatives have attempted to preserve, reuse, and repurpose One Spadina Crescent. This project has revived the site and offers a north face for the first time in its history. The preservation of the north addition will have value in how it establishes a dialogue with the urban and campus context and serves as a critical piece of infrastructure for the city of Toronto.
"This well-conceived renovation and addition are “in place” with the well-integrated daylight and water collector systems." -Jury statement