Aiming high: in search of a novel design for new EV washrooms
Design competition with jury of leading architects and urban planners aims to fashion a functional space that’s also a meaningful community feature
CMLC—champion of the East Village Master Plan vision since 2007—has invested more than $400 million into improvements to the community, from pedestrian bridges, pocket parks and people-first streetscape enhancements to major civic amenities like a new public library.
In 2012, as part of the first phase of development of Jack and Jean Leslie RiverWalk—an eminently popular two-kilometre multi-use pathway that connects the Centre Street Bridge to the 9 Avenue Bridge—we installed two automated public washrooms along the pathway at RiverWalk Plaza. The washrooms served the community well for nearly a decade; however, in the face of ongoing and increasing maintenance costs and social pressures, we chose to close them earlier this year and sought safer and more functional alternatives.
To provide visitors to East Village with a much-needed place for ‘relief’, we installed a temporary washroom at the Crossroads—a pilot solution whose location has significantly circumvented the issues that plagued the original public washrooms and that will remain in place as the design competition unfolds.
As a result, we’re ready to launch a design competition for new, permanent public washrooms at or near this same site. The competition’s aim is to identify a proponent to design and build a structure that serves the functional needs of users, meets the community’s needs for safety, and aligns with the energy, vibrancy and personality we’ve so carefully cultivated in East Village over the past 15 years.
This week, CMLC launches a request for qualifications for the new washrooms. Shortlisted proponents will be invited to respond to an RFP, which will be reviewed by a jury whose members have proven expertise in design, aesthetics and inner-city neighbourhood complexities. The jury will be looking for the submission that achieves design excellence, aligns with the character of the neighbourhood while incorporating safety, accessibility, and sustainability into the design. The jury includes:
· Craig Dykers, Founding Partner, Snøhetta
· Lourdes Juan, Founder and Urban Planner
· Alfred Waugh, President and Founding Principal, Formline Architecture
· Brent Bellamy, Creative Director at Number TEN Architectural Group
· Kelly Coles, VP of Design and Construction at CMLC
We expect to announce the successful proponent for the new washrooms in early 2023 and look forward to the new washrooms opening in late 2023.