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Downsview Framework Plan wins a Toronto Urban Design Award

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September 14, 2023

One of the most significant city-building opportunities in North America, the Downsview Framework Plan, has been awarded a 2023 Toronto Urban Design Award in the Vision and Masterplan category.

The Toronto Urban Design Awards acknowledge the important contributions that architects and planners, among other creative city building contributors, make to the fabric and livability of Toronto. The Framework Plan encompasses 520 acres, including the former Downsview Airport Lands, and portions of the former CFB Downsview military airfield.

Spearheaded by Northcrest Developments and Canada Lands Company, the design team includes KPMB Architects, Henning Larsen Architects, SLA Architects, and Urban Strategies.

“This recognition shows that designing urban spaces in concert with nature and all its elements from the start is how we create resilient, climate-positive communities. We’re at the beginning of an exhilarating new development that will re-connect Downsview with new types of neighbourhoods and to legacy natural systems of Toronto,” said partner Kevin Bridgman.

The Downsview Framework Plan represents a revolutionary city building perspective that puts nature and humans at the forefront of urban planning. The Framework Plan’s central feature is the two-kilometre-long airport runway, reimagined as a pedestrianized open space for gathering, play, and celebration, animated by community-led initiatives and connected through a series of new parks and open spaces, with development around the perimeter.

The jury called it “an extremely inspirational project,” saying it had the potential to “reset how larger tracts of land can be comprehensively designed around resiliency and climate change.”

The Downsview Framework Plan has received many important recognitions in North America and globally. In 2022, the Downsview Framework Plan won two awards at the World Architecture Festival — the WAFX Award and Future Projects Award in the Masterplanning category.

Learn more about the Downsview Framework Plan here.