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3Dementia

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The renders/photo are old, but the captions are brand new!

🏀A bad but towering joke I concocted 15 years ago. The empty arena seats did sorta foreshadow the Raptors’ (pandemic) 2020 title defence.

a-cnbasketball.jpg



🖌A very small pic of a very large future render I did a dozen years ago.

future-Toronto-waterfront.jpg



🌇 A very small version of my (oh so cleverly titled) “Model City” assembly… I mostly ripped off forgiving UT photogs’ shots of sales centre models (am sure I got permission). NOTE: the old 1 Bloor East model.

dModel-City.jpg



💰 Another tiny pic of a very large future render circa 2012-ish. Finally made a few buck$ for my doodles - a corporate commission. Koops helped out a lot (I paid him $1.79 per hour). Best of all I got to boss around an aerial photographer (airplane not drone back then) for the base photo.

ehigh-angle-corp.jpg




👍 Thanks for wasting time with me (use the blue thumbs up... I may have mentioned my crappy reaction score).
 

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Doubt anyone will remember this goofy thing from ancient times.

TORVAN (drawn 2009)

torvan.jpg


____________________________________



Cathedral Square
(first drawn in 2010)
This was an early "big idea" scribble for the 500 year old giant parking lot bounded by Queen to Shuter and Dalhousie to Mutual... now home to HPA's 88 Queen, The Elm and Ledbury etc.

4 trips to Italy made me determined to get Toronto a true European piazza in the perfect location - the vast parking lot (former home of Cookes Church) with views of St. Michael's Cathedral, Metropolitan United Church and the spire of St. James Cathedral to the south.... thus the logical name of the square.

The media listened but no-one else did (not even the property owners ;-).

Wide angle view
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FYI, for new UT member eyeballs: the original UrbanToronto logo (think we used the top right one) which was sketched by my former business partner and original UT member Stephen (a brilliant young all-media graphic designer).

Before Ed Skira was born, 16 years ago I hosted a meeting attended by Stephen, Billy Corgan (the original UT overlord), AlvinofDiaspar and a few others. Can't remember if this logo was already in the mix or whether it was birthed by Stephen after that meeting.

1. ORIGINAL

originalUTlogo.png

2. After Ed returned from Ottawa with his Companion of the Order of Canada medal, he revamped UT completely including the present day logo/brand.
UTlogo.gif



3. Many years ago, before Ed decided to work with an actual design professional on the UT revamp. he asked me to work for free and send him some ideas. I came up with an astonishing "high concept" with supporting web ads.

He hasn't returned my calls or emails to this day. This submission did however inspire the "ignore" button preference on forums around the world.

My first "Planet of Toronto" draft sent to Ed:

urbantoronto-planet.jpg


Despite Ed's radio silence (< < this btw is a very clever dig at Ed's paying job at that time), I took this unimpeachable concept to the City of Toronto.

If "silence" was/is indeed "golden", my present Visa card debt would not be top 10 in the nation.

flag-planet.jpg


SPECIAL NOTE: I should have sent this to the Mayor of Toronto. I foolishly sent it to the Planning Department (they were swamped then as now).

Cheers.
 

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ONTARIO PLACE REDUX

OntarioPlace-Redux-aerial.jpeg


For new forum members, here's a demented(?) plan called Ontario Place Redux I did 7 years ago to revitalize (and retain) Ontario Place and add an entire floating village called Arcology Village that was intended in part to help keep OP a year-round destination. Smaller versions of such "floating neighbourhoods" have been built around the world.

The idea of birthing a neighbourhood around OP was somewhat inspired by Eb Zeidler's original masterplan for OP that included an infill neighbourhood called Harbour City.

* Not surprisingly, I received zero feedback from the city despite substantial media coverage. The City: “oh not this guy again” lol.

Ontario-Place-Redux-Guide.jpg


LARGE OVERVIEW RENDER:

http://www.upside-down.ca/OntarioPlace-Redux-masterplan.jpg

SUPPORTING WORDS (and pics) PDF

www.upside-down.ca/OntarioPlace-Redux-masterplan-email.pdf
 
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Though not from my old laptop, being a fiercely-patriotic canuck, I thought I'd share this Quality of Life Ranking link posted by Toronto Drew at SSP. We're Number One ;-)

Brief tangent first: I responded to a recent RFP issued Justin time for Canada Day. The RFP requested concept designs for a nation-wide licence plate (aka license plate) that could actually be read by law enforcement (day or night).

There were only 2 submissions and unfortunately I didn't win (that's 5 minutes of work I'll never get back). I did place in the top 2 though.

license-north.jpg

pan-sky-avatar.jpg


Quality of Life Rankings
https://www.usnews.com/news/best-countries/quality-of-life-rankings

For 2020 out of 80 nations.

#01. Canada !
cheers.gif

#02. Denmark
#03. Sweden
#04. Norway
#05. Australia
#06. Netherlands
#07. Switzerland
#08. New Zealand
#09. Finland
#10. Germany
#11. Austria
#12. United Kingdom
#13. Luxembourg
#14. Japan
#15. United States
#16. France
#17. Portugal
#18. Spain
#19. China ( Nice to see them moving up the rankings so fast)
#20. Singapore
#21. Italy
#22. Poland
#23. South Korea
#24. Czech Republic
#25. United Arab Emirates
#26. Greece
#27. Malaysia
#28. Thailand
#29. Croatia
#30. India
 
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I feel like the top 8 or so are usually the same countries and they bounce around the rankings each year. Northern Europe and the big developed Commonwealth countries (ex the motherland).
 
Another decade, another Gardiner Distressway Discussion

Some recent posts on the forum about the Gardiner (and decking the rail corridor) reminded me I had gigs of stuff on the old laptop that I forgot to share. Pretty sure this isn't buried in the Gardiner threads.

Genesis: A decade a half ago, a young engineer named Jose Gutierrez approached me about doing some design work for his pet project. I thought his idea needed massaging, but basically it was brilliant... removing the crumbling "psychological" barrier to the waterfront (Gardiner), while mitigating the real waterfront barrier - the below grade rail corridor west of Union Station (as well as the elevated rail berm east of Union).

The genius of his idea was it would have avoided most of the nightmare of Boston's "Big Dig" (12 years of havoc and mayhem, huge budget over-runs, and nearly a half $Billion litigation awards). How? Because the Gardiner wouldn't even be torn down until the idea, the Toronto Waterfront Viaduct, was completed.

Using cantilever cable-stayed construction methods, a new transportation corridor would be built, elevated just above the rail corridor, without almost no interruption to rail traffic.

I added a “spectacular” (somebody else’s quote ;-) public amenity called skyPATH - a sort of hanging gardens of Babylon below the deck of the viaduct, that would be an all season pedestrian and cycling destination (and a major tourist attraction)… with lots of north/south connections, effectively eliminating the rail corridor barrier for pedestrians/cyclists (via smog-free, temperature-controlled access points). Easy access to the existing PATH network of course. Imagine living in Liberty Village or CityPlace and walking to work in the financial district via skyPATH in a January blizzard.... with your coat slung over your shoulder. The private partner in a public/private partnership would be able to develop all the reclaimed lands once the Gardiner was dismantled. Lakeshore Blvd. would be transformed into a grand boulevard.

Speed limits on the viaduct through the city core would be a modest 60/70 km/hour but the increased capacity of car/transit/cycle/pedestrian TWV offered would actually reduce commute times. Future electrification of rail traffic through downtown would be easier as the TWV deck would host it.

So in a nutshell, perhaps the largest city-building exercise in civic history. Bye bye rail corridor and berm barriers, bye bye Gardiner. Much of it paid for by the private sector.

Of course nutin’ happened but I did learn a bit about using Photoshop (did the website, all imaging, media and dreamed up skyPATH etc.). My homemade scribbles don't compare to the render magic of WZMH's proposed new sock over the Gardiner (which leaves the Gardiner standing, albeit dressed up, and adds some 1000m Blade Runner scrapers). But some solid ideas were hopefully communicated.

Two loco (local) guys seeking attention: our (not so) crazy scheme garnered a bunch of media coverage and a presentation at Queens Park. The TV interviews were fun but my 2 favourite moments were these:
1. Jack Layton offered a few thoughts via email… he basically said that the quagmire of issues surrounding “air rights” over the rail corridor will kill this in an hour or so. Good luck guys.

2. Our concept was featured in a “Future of The Gardiner” public meeting at the Metro Convention Centre… and the organizers didn’t even contact us (they stole the images I guess lol)! At least admission was free.

Below is a PDF snapshot of our full case if you're in the mood to scroll or your Netflix subscription has lapsed. I've posted lots of the (smaller) slides below for a slightly briefer look at the idea.

Toronto Waterfront Viaduct - full presentation (PDF) - (includes BUDGET Estimates/Financing Strategy etc.)
PDF
Note: Open the PDF above with Adobe Reader - it takes a minute to load and sometimes lands mid-presentation - just scroll to the top to start the full tour.

SAMPLE SLIDES - PART 1

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END OF PART 1​
 

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SAMPLE SLIDES - PART 2

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^^ Clearly this view is pre-CityPlace, however corridor construction would have little impact on residents (some noise ;-)
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^^ Bear in mind this was 15 years ago (before Fort York Presentation Centre) and envisioned removal of the elevated Gardiner, not beautification underneath ;-)
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ONE MORE PIC
thanks for taking the tour


Thinking BIG in Toronto (no not the Danish architects):
It's a fun amateur hobby to dream up city-building schemes, but if you ain't connected, be content to contributing a bit to the conversation. Cheers.

Slide23-FINAL.jpg
 
Over in the Politics section I did a "by the numbers" comparison of 150 metre+ "skyscrapers" between Toronto and Chicago (built, u/c, proposed) along with some editiorializing about CTBUH's muddled height criteria. Here's the numbers.

Toronto only:

TOR-150m.jpg


Toronto - Chicago
TOR-CHI-150m.png
 
Stumbled across this scribble. Years ago I shared a few emails with Arthur Erickson (who was kind enough to send me the gorgeous original design for Roy Thomson Hall's seamless glass canopy). Years later I dreamed up a condo for the southern portion of the site (big bucks for RTH ;-), and included a compete exterior re-clad of the as-built "angel food cake covered in mullions and a concrete beanie" ... back to Arthur's elegant first design.

rth-condofinal.jpg .jpg
 
A better pic of the future render from a dozen years ago. Who knew much extra stuff will eventually live in this waterfront pov.

futurewaterfront2009.jpg



Another oldie... a mega-pano from Cherry Beach when Oxford proposed the super-talls for the Convention Centre site.

CLICK the link for full size and then zoom in 🔎: http://www.upside-down.ca/cherry-oxford.jpg

Future-skyline-cherry-oxford.jpg
 
I love this sign on "The Junction" (of course)... wish more new developments played the name game (great way-finding too).
Junction.jpeg

UT

Does anyone know if the Honest Ed's sign will be included some how... maybe the south lane/park? Was the sign saved??
mirvish-lane.jpg

UT
honestedsign2.jpeg

The Star


This one (3450 Dufferin) near the junction of the 401 and the Allen Expressway needs an LED/faux neon sign like the one below.
3450-Dufferin.jpeg

UT
istock-1132762078.jpg

Link
 
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