Nathan Phillips Square Podium Green Roof, Toronto Landscape Architecture, Architect, Photos

Nathan Phillips Square Revitalisation, Toronto

Public Realm Revitalisation in Ontario – New Canada Urban Landscape Design

Toronto Design Contest
Nathan Phillips Square Competition – 14 Apr 2014 : Sukkahville 2014

24 Mar 2011

Nathan Phillips Square Revitalisation Toronto – Award

CSLA Regional Honour Award

Design Competition

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Project for Nathan Phillips Square Revitalization by:

PLANT Architect Inc. | Shore Tilbe Irwin & Partners · Architects in Joint Venture

Toronto City Hall Podium Roof Garden – the first phase of the Nathan Phillips Square Revitalization Project, and the country’s largest accessible green roof – has just won a CSLA (Canadian Society of Landscape Architects) Regional HONOUR Award.

The podium roof of City Hall is at once part of the raised walkway system and the largest and most secluded of the Square’s perimeter gardens. The new green roof consists of three formal conditions: a sedum mosaic, a paved courtyard that frames the curved chamber and a deck café that occupies the prow. The perimeter garden is treated as a field in purple, pink, yellow/orange and green sedums. This ground cover is planted in a prevegetated tray system with shade tolerant species concentrated in the shadows of the City Hall’s towers.

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The edge of the podium roof is lined in a walkway paved in precast planks, flush with the planting trays and interlocking with them. Wood benches complete the field, distributed around the roof in the planting beds. In future, a demountable kiosk will allow the prow to be programmed as a fair weather bar/café overlooking the Square.

The council chamber floats on a disk of granite chip pavers, which acts as a site for events and temporary art installations. This courtyard is lit with a dispersed pattern of light columns, and the sedum field is illuminated by lights recessed in the roof-edge guardrail, creating the effect of a glowing garden when seen from adjoining buildings.

The podium roof is connected to the Square by the ceremonial ramp at the south, repaved and with a lit wooden rail along one side. It links to the elevated walkway by a stair at its Eastern edge, to Hagerman Street in the North, and to the lobby and council chamber of city hall through elevators within the existing building.

Nathan Phillips Square Toronto Landscape Nathan Phillips Square Landscape
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The NPS Podium Roof Garden is the recipient of a 2011 CSLA Regional Honour Award.

Nathan Phillips Square Podium Green Roof – Information

Title: Nathan Phillips Square Revitalization – Podium Green Roof
General Contractor: Flynn Canada / Gardens in the Sky
Structural: Blackwell Bowick Engineering
Mechanical/Electrical: Crossey Engineering Ltd.
Photos: Steven Evans and Chris Pommer
Team: PLANT – Chris Pommer, Lisa Rapoport, Mary Tremain, Elise Shelley, Vanessa Eickhoff, Lisa Moffitt, Jane Hutton, Heather Asquith, Lisa Dietrich, Suzanne Ernst, Jessica Craig, Jeremy McGregor, Matt Hartney
STIP – Andrew Frontini, D’Arcy Arthurs, Linda Neumayer, Perry Edwards, Gavin Guthrie; HSLA – Peter Schaudt, John Ridenour
ABUP – Adrian Blackwell, Marcin Kedzior; James Urban; Blanche Lemko van Ginkel.


Nathan Phillips Square Revitalisation – design competition

Winner: Plant Architect Inc., announced Mar 2007, approx. budget: $40m

Nathan Phillips Square
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Nathan Phillips Square opened in 1965

Original architect: Viljo Revell

Project by:

PLANT Architect Inc. | Shore Tilbe Irwin & Partners · Architects in Joint Venture

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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