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green streets
thoughts, ideas + dialogues on urban revitalization, smart growth + neighborhood development
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Sherbourne Common: A Transformed Brownfield at Toronto's Revitalized Waterfront

Sherbourne Common: A Transformed Brownfield at Toronto's Revitalized Waterfront | green streets | Scoop.it

Sherbourne Common, transformed from a brownfield site along a neglected stretch of Toronto’s waterfront, transcends the conventional definition of a park by interweaving a stormwater treatment facility with landscape, architecture, engineering, and public art. As the newest addition to Toronto’s revitalized waterfront, it's both an outdoor living room for the emerging mixed-use community and an urban park intended to serve the broader constituency of downtown Toronto.

Conceived as a catalytic node along the waterfront, Sherbourne Common was built in advance of private development. The commitment to public realm was paramount to the client’s vision for the regeneration of Toronto’s waterfront. Sherbourne Common along with other waterfront public realm contributions are becoming well used beautiful moments along the lakeshore strung together with a new waterfront promenade and a future grand boulevard. This is strong evidence of the significance and power of building public realm in generating new vibrant urban communities on post industrial lands...

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What Cities Can Learn From Toronto's Green Roof Policy

What Cities Can Learn From Toronto's Green Roof Policy | green streets | Scoop.it
Already, 1.2 million square feet of green space have been added to the city.

In January of 2010, Toronto became the first city in North America to require the installation of green roofs on new commercial, institutional, and multifamily residential developments across the city. Next week, the requirement will expand to apply to new industrial development as well.

Toronto’s requirements are embodied in a municipal bylaw that includes standards for when a green roof is required and what elements are required in the design. Generally speaking, smaller residential and commercial buildings (such as apartment buildings less than six stories tall) are exempt; from there, the larger the building, the larger the vegetated portion of the roof must be. For the largest buildings, 60 percent of available space on the roof must be vegetated.

The industry association Green Roofs for Healthy Cities announced last fall in a press release that Toronto’s green roof requirements had already resulted in more than 1.2 million square feet of new green space planned on commercial, institutional, and multifamily residential developments. According to the association, the benefits will include more than 125 full-time jobs related to the manufacture, design, installation and maintenance of the roofs; reduction of more than 435,000 cubic feet of stormwater each year; and annual energy savings of over 1.5 million KWH for building owners. The longer the program is in effect, the more the benefits will increase...

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Sustainable Infrastructure as Public Amenity

Sustainable Infrastructure as Public Amenity | green streets | Scoop.it

Ok, I’m impressed.  Have you seen Sherbourne Common? If you haven’t, I suggest that  you check it out.  This is the most recent project to be unveiled as part of Toronto’s ambitious waterfront.

Designed by landscape architects Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg, Sherbourne Common is an example of how critical infrastructure – in this case a neighbourhood storm water treatment facility – can be fully integrated into a neighbourhood. The brilliant part is that the facility doubles as an elegant public space where current and future residents of the planned East Bay Front community will be able to gather, play and interact

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Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary all rank in top five on list of world’s most liveable cities

Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary all rank in top five on list of world’s most liveable cities | green streets | Scoop.it
Three Canadian cities have again cracked the top five on a ranking of the world’s most liveable places. In the latest report from the Economist Int (#Vancouver is #3 on the 2012 Most Livable Cities in the World!

 

In the latest report from the Economist Intelligence Unit, Vancouver ranked third, followed by Toronto and Calgary in fourth and fifth respectively. The Canadian cities were bested only by Vienna in second and Melbourne, which topped The Economist’s Liveability Ranking.

The annual survey of 140 cities uses more than 30 factors to gauge the state of healthcare, education, infrastructure, stability, culture and environment — rendering a score out of 100.

Vancouver lost marks only for petty crime rates, availability of quality housing and congested road networks, with report authors citing a series of infrastructure projects such as the new Evergreen transit line “that will no doubt have a long-term benefit, but in the short-term they can be disruptive.”

 

The results vary little from the last ranking released six months ago, with Vancouver maintaining the third spot after slipping from first place in 2011.

Most of the top-tier countries are separated by fractions of a percentage — the first-ranked Melbourne is scored 97.5, only 1.8 points higher than 10th-place Auckland, N.Z. The Economist Information Unit uses the ranking to provide suggestions on how businesses should compensate employees working abroad in cities “where living conditions are particularly difficult.”

It’s one of several studies of its kind, but economic development experts in the listed Canadian cities say The Economist report’s catering to business communities could lead to tangible benefits...

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Transforming Historic Urban Space Into A Vibrant Cultural District

Transforming Historic Urban Space Into A Vibrant Cultural District | green streets | Scoop.it

As the needs of cities change, older buildings can find themselves a bit redundant. The challenge for urban areas is to find a new purpose for these buildings, one which is historically respectful but at the same time creates a space that meets the modern needs of a city. This is exactly what has happened in Toronto, where a former distillery has been transformed into a varied, vibrant, and immensely popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

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