The Evolution of Waterfront Public Spaces: A comparative assessment of public use on Toronto’s Harbour Square Park and York Quay
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The objective of this report is to investigate the evolution of uses on two waterfront public spaces. These case studies are located in close proximity on Toronto’s Central Waterfront and are similar in size, but reflect radically different planning ideals and design methods.Harbour Square Park was developed as an afterthought to a public private partnership between the City of Toronto, the Toronto Harbourfront Commission and Campeau Corporation. It is surrounded by high rise, high density buildings that enclose the public realm of Harbour Square Park. The public space has been incrementally upgraded over the years by the City of Toronto. The other study area is York Quay, located between the Harbourfront Centre and redeveloped mixed use Queens Quay Terminal. York Quay was originally a parking lot for these two structures and was redeveloped by Waterfront Toronto in 2006 as a public space designed by West 8 and DTAH. The study area is characterized by the programming and temporary markets provided by the Harbourfront Centre.