Homegrown Design Challenge: Presented by Workshop Architecture and the David Suzuki Foundation

10 July 2014 - 10 August 2014
Image from winning design Carolinian Way, a naturalized, forested alley by landscape architect Tawab Hlimi

Homegrown National Park Project Background

The David Suzuki Foundation launched the Homegrown National Park Project in Spring 2013. The project’s purpose is to create a crowd-sourced, homegrown green space in the heart of the City of Toronto, along the former path of Garrison Creek, one of Toronto's most historic lost rivers. Working with 14 partner groups, more than a dozen neighbourhood organizations and hundreds of local residents, the project has begun to enhance, restore and grow more green space along the corridor. It has begun to inspire property owners and institutions to plant native trees, shrubs and flowers, and grow food in backyards and balconies. In the spring, the Foundation recruited and trained a team of 21 volunteer Neighbourhood Park Rangers who live, work and play in the corridor and have been launching new projects and spreading the word about the initiative.

Homegrown Design Challenge and Exhibition

The Homegrown Design Challenge invited prominent architects and landscape architects — and members of the public in an open call — to submit ideas for low-cost, easy-to-implement green design solutions for yards, alleys, commercial properties and schoolyards. The jurors selected two winning submissions. "DIY backyard bee hotels" by Sustainable.TO Architecture + Building, and "Carolinian Way," a naturalized, forested alley by landscape architect Tawab Hlimi, shared the $500 in prizes. Design ideas included proposals to adapt laneways and parking lots to more effectively absorb and filter stormwater; transform schoolyards to create outdoor learning environments that are more natural and ecologically diverse; foster greater diversity in front yards to support pollinators like bees and butterflies; and create raised structures that playfully connect residents with lost rivers beneath the city. These designs are exhibited in the Urbanspace Gallery July 10 - August 10, 2014. Read More>>

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Workshop Architecture with David Suzuki Foundation