Great Gulf Group of Companies
Janet Rosenberg & Studio (Landscape Architect)
2006 CSLA Award, Regional Honour
2005 National Post Design Exchange (DX) Awards, Honourable Mention
Photography Credit: Neil Fox, Peter Sellar, Janet Rosenberg & Studio
Town Hall Square is an inner city, 0.6 acre park located adjacent to the historic Yorkville Library in Toronto’s upscale Yorkville neighbourhood. This precedent-setting park was built over an underground parking garage on land donated to the City by the condominium developer.
The design, a modern reinterpretation of traditional patterning of the French parterre, stands out for its bold geometric patterns that make the square aesthetically pleasing both from the street level and from the condominium units above. Innovative planting solutions – such as the rows of Gingko trees, specifically chosen for their ability to withstand harsh urban conditions – allow for increased tree survival. Tree roots are protected by concrete disks that also serve as flexible seating areas. Large precast pots with boxwood balls, yew hedging, and vinca ground cover add to the crisp geometry and neatly manicured aesthetic of the park. The park also holds a 25 foot Corten steel and aluminum sculptural piece by Canadian Artist Jean-Pierre Morin, selected through an art competition that was coordinated by JRS in collaboration with a public art facilitator.
The park allows for any number of activities – a quick stroll, a group meeting, an intimate conversation, a park lunch break, or a small scale public event. Land that was traditionally seen as unusable has become a beautiful retreat.