National Urban Design Awards — 2020 Recipient | Royal Architectural Institute of Canada

National Urban Design Awards — 2020 Recipient

North East Exchange District Public Realm
Award Category: 
National Urban Design Awards
Civic Design Projects

Lead Firm: HTFC Planning & Design in collaboration with WSP Engineering, the City of Winnipeg  & CentreVenture Development Corporation
Completion: September 2018

Winnipeg’s North East Exchange District is home to a forward-looking public realm underpinned by the rich warehouse commerce story of the city. The people-first woonerfs, green lanes, plazas, and parklets of the district, buzz with activity in all seasons. Together, these richly textured and accessible public places, form the soulful connective tissue that is the lifeblood of Winnipeg’s hottest and fastest-growing neighbourhood. Completed in 2018, this 6-year-long collaborative urban renewal project has been the catalyst for a private development that houses 2000 new residents—and welcomes more than a million visitors a year to its urban delights.

Jury Comment(s): 

"Exemplifies the systematic implementation of an urban design plan over many years to create significant community benefits. The design team’s people-first vision, and multi-party collaboration, have resulted in a high-quality public realm. This public sector investment has leveraged further private interest and revitalization in an underutilized area."

"A well-executed design with thoughtful strategic interventions that have a transformative impact on the quality and cohesiveness of Winnipeg’s North East Exchange District."

"The degree of integration of public art as a structural —rather than purely aesthetic—component is notable. Incorporated materials, details, lighting, and overall degree of sophistication is well-calibrated and appropriate to the industrial ethos of the area. Using alternative stormwater management strategies is innovative in the context of Winnipeg—and most mid-sized Canadian cities."

Jury members

Click for full version: 
Trellis with seating node and at-grade pedestrian access to lane.

PHOTO: HTFC Planning & Design

Rest area with trellis that includes built-in lighting, providing a safe place to meet and gather at night during the winter theatre season.

PHOTO: HTFC Planning & Design

A lane that is shared between vehicles delivering goods to the adjacent warehouses and connects pedestrians between Market and John Hirsch.

PHOTO: HTFC Planning & Design

Pedestrian scale lighting including historic style poles, trellis post lighting and tree up lighting to increase safety and achieve City requirements for lane lighting.

PHOTO: HTFC Planning & Design

Alleyways Market takes over the back lane at Elgin for four Fridays each summer. In it’s second full year the market provides a mix of handmade goods, ready to eat snacks and fresh, locally produced food.

PHOTO: HTFC Planning & Design

Street hockey tournament organized by HTFC with five architectural firms in the area.

PHOTO: HTFC Planning & Design