London Community Foundation
Janet Rosenberg & Studio (Landscape Architect, Lead Consultant)
Superkül Architects (Design Architect)
Aquafor Beech Ltd (Water Resources Engineer)
ERA Architects Inc (Heritage Architect)
Mobycon (Social Sustainability)
Dougan & Associates (Ecological Consultant)
Éclairage Public (Lighting Designer)
Photography Credit: Renderings by JRS
Our proposal offers a unique opportunity for London to build its future by recognizing its past, mobilizing a philosophical shift in how it looks at water. Our submission, g-Radiant City, responded to elements lost, such as the forests of White Pine and Sycamore at the Forks, and the river islands of Harris Park, together with fleeting elements, such as the rush of spring floods. We recognized that the Thames River is a disturbed system in which 90% of the natural vegetation has been cleared due to a mix of urbanization, agriculture and industry and that the river flows have been tamed by dams upstream. It was not our intention to return the river to a pristine, natural state, but rather to generate a more resilient and functioning river.
We were inspired by the river’s expansion and contraction in response to changes in weather and seasons. We saw the river’s channel expressed as braided elastic zones of transition between wet and dry, and river and city. A new water channel in Harris Park, for example, maintains a steady flow of water to allude to the site’s history as a river island and is buffered by an overflow dry river bed. This will cleanse water, support habitats, and create a beautiful space, offering opportunities for fishing, splashing, and skating in the winter.
Our vision reaches from the river into the city along new branches of blue and green infrastructure, while also pulling from the city to the river along an armature of new pedestrian, cyclist, and transit networks.