Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Welcome Hut at the Evergreen’s Brick Works Toronto, Canada by Levitt Goodman Architects
June 19th, 2014 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: Levitt Goodman Architects
To greet visitors in the months before its offi cial opening later this year, Evergreen Brickworks commissioned a temporary Welcome Hut for the 12-acre community environmental centre. The 98 sq.ft. hut is designed to provide an immediate node for visitors and to support the Evergreen’s mission to showcase for green design and environmentally sustainable initiatives.
Architectural Project Team
The hut’s primary building materials give new life to refuse: a derelict shipping container is embellished with salvage from the historic backyards including a graffi ti door that now leads to a deck, sheets of slate that are now chalkboards and an electrical panel and factory lamps that now hang from the ceiling as an artful light fi xture.
Elevated and painted Evergreen’s signature eye-popping green, the container commands attention while also providing barrier-free access and preventing fl ooding (the Brickworks is in a fl oodplain). Barn-like doors at either end of the container open it up to the elements and invite entry with a gesture like open arms. A bumped-out steel frame window gives the container a new dimension and transforms it into architecture. Adding to the hut’s purpose, a scupper on the roof funnels rainwater into an adjacent rain barrel.
The ramps, deck, doors and internal walls and fl oors are made from TimberSIL, a breakthrough alternative to conventional pressure treated wood that uses a non-toxic sodium-silicate based process that makes the wood impermeable without leaching chemicals into the ground. There are built-in TimberSIL brochure racks and shelving within the window box for maps, plants, merchandise or artifacts.
To “ignite” the space around the hut and encourage people to linger, the architects collaborated with furniturecraftsman Andrew Reesor and a group of grade 10 students to design and construct an interior bench (that doubles as a storage box) and outdoor furniture that can be used as either six independent stools or fit together to create one or two large benches – all made from recycled shipping crates.
“This project is a wonderfully poetic microcosm of the Brickworks initiative as a whole,” said Evergreen Senior Project Manger Matthew Cohen. “Old industrial material is given a new life and purpose through collaboration and design. It is recreated as a joyous place for Torontonians and anyone interested in green initiatives.” Once the Welcome Hut is no longer required for its original purpose, it will be easily converted into a warming spot and a hot beverage kiosk for skaters in the winter and an information kiosk in the warm months.
About Levitt Goodman Architects
Levitt Goodman Architects Ltd. is an award-winning architecture fi rm that has been providing a wide range of architectural services since its formation in 1989.
The fi rm has a proven commitment to providing excellent buildings with a high degree of design expertise. We have received recognition for our architectural work in many forums, such as the prestigious Governor General’s Medal of Excellence in Architecture, the 2001 Peter J Marshall Municipal Innovation Award of Excellence and several DX Design Effectiveness Awards, CMHC Best Housing Practices Awards and Urban Institute ‘Brownie’ Awards.
Our designs celebrate the many ways to live and work.
The challenges unique to each project are an opportunity to innovate, to be inspired and to demonstrate how good design improves people’s lives. We have extensive experience in talking to diverse client groups about their needs and a history of making architecture a rewarding and fulfi lling experience. Collaboration is fundamental to our process.
We feel it is essential to generate ideas and work through problems together – in our studio, with our engineers, contractors and, most importantly, with our clients. It is a priority for us to establish and maintain good communication with everyone involved. Accountability, maintaining budgets and attention to detail are ensured by the continuous, hands-on involvement of the principals for the duration of any project.
We never lose sight of the context.
We know that buildings are part of a bigger picture – socially, environmentally and culturally – and aim to make each design progressive, sensitive and relevant. We like to use energy- and cost-effi cient materials in inventive ways for results that are both design oriented and sustainable. Regardless of the size or type of project, our approach is always technically, aesthetically and economically well informed. www.levittgoodmanarchitects.com
Contact Levitt Goodman Architects