This week two new office buildings were announced in Toronto and Vancouver by Allied Properties and Westbank. Both are being designed by Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG). As you would expect, Alex Bozikovic of the Globe and Mail has done a proper writeup, here.
The building in Toronto (called Union Centre) is generally located at 171 Front Street West. It is a revision to a previous proposal for the site that was originally submitted back in 2014. That project got approved by Council, but the implementing by-laws were never enacted.
My favorite image from their rezoning resubmission is this one here:
It clearly shows the big idea behind the project, which is to push all of the building’s elevator shafts to its north elevation. This opens up its large floor plates to the south, but also allows for a kind of elevator equalizer show on the outside of the building. The cabs are intended to be lit and the shafts are intended to be built using clear glazing. That’s what you’re seeing above.
I don’t think we have enough fun with building lights here in Toronto. So I was pretty pumped to see this get proposed. What are your thoughts?
Rendering by Bjarke Ingels Group