National Urban Design Awards — 2014 Recipient | Royal Architectural Institute of Canada

National Urban Design Awards — 2014 Recipient

Ryerson Image Centre and School of Image Arts
Award Category: 
Urban Architecture

Diamond Schmitt Architects

A donation of a major collection of photojournalism was the impetus to create the Image Centre. It brought about the renovation and expansion of a former brewery warehouse that housed Ryerson’s School of Image Arts for 50 years. The project cost $42 million. A double-skin glass façade encircles the upper floor of the existing building and conceals an LED lighting system. By day, this opaque glass surface provides a white backdrop to campus life. At night, a display of multi-coloured lights glows in separate panels or in unison, transforming the building into a work of art as a programmable and interactive light installation. 

Jury Comment(s): 

“An excellent example of the type of architectural project rewarded in this category.  This contemporary building design, with its signature architectural qualities and details, makes a significant urban design contribution to downtown Toronto. Moreover, it animates the existing square and brings it to life. Through its transparency, it acts as a showcase for photography and at night it acts as a light box with visual animation – reflective of its internal functions. The building and the adjacent square become inseparable in their symbiotic relationship."

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Photo: Tom Arban

Photo: Sid Tabak

Photo: Tom Arban

Photo: Tom Arban / RIC

Photo: Diamond Schmitt