Everything to do with the stairwell is particularly bad. The cladding of the auditorium is a simple stack bond of white brick… and while I like stack bond, we get little of it here, that's a very large area to go unrelieved. I wouldn't want something fussy there either, but surely some subtle gesture could be introduced that could reference the 1920 building, and tie it into it without pretending to be it.That's interesting to note that UofT is considering creating its own faculty housing. Thanks for sharing that - I wonder if we'll hear any announcements or see any movement on it in the coming year.
As for those updated renderings above, I don't know where to begin with how uninspired, uncomfortable, and overall poor that design is - the dimensions and proportions of everything feel off. I don't understand a lot of the stuff coming out of DSAI lately.
I think they're at the final stage of planning approval on this. I doubt it's going before the DRP, and I expect few if any changes at this point… and that's unfortunate if I'm right.It's not an issue with a lack of articulation for me so much as the overall massing. The ground level "cut" looks claustrophobic for the proportions of the greater volume; it looks heavy. And the way it encroaches the east side of the old school and then matches its height as a datum - that feels wrong. If it's going to wrap the side, it should defer or contrast to the old building entirely, not use it as a datum.
It looks like they're trying to do something interesting sectionally, but without even seeing the drawings I feel like it's just not there yet.
It is interesting that there are video game characters illustrated on the middle floor of the exposed stairwell (from left to right):