I agree with urbandreamer on this one. I find it nostalgic and restrained (although, I very much admit, this is a very preliminary first impression based on a few illustrations). It`s quite hard to tell from the renders, but I don`t see anything engaging the public sphere in any way. Especially given how shiny that promo video was, you`d think they were building something mind-blowing here....
Great news indeed...
Toronto is more ambitious now than ever before, and so should the UofT architecture school in the great city.
The old and new part in their design is just great, and I hope they restore those pinacles(picture below) in the way they originally were.
I think it's the key element to complete the old beauty of gothic spires. I don't know why those details were lost in the first place, but it should not cost them too much to restore them on the top.
The addition is definitely unique and looks like it will harmonize with the heritage landmark with its angles and narrow windows on the sides (though the windows seem too narrow even next to the heritage building). Old Knox College will probably be properly restored. It looks quite promising. It would be great to see some engaging public spaces added around the buildings in the circle because of the unique nature of the circle within Toronto's street grid and the impressive landmark located on it.
Per the April 17 U of T Governing Council Planning and Budget Committee Report:
The original 1874 building is to be remediated and renovated as Phase 1. This work will take place beginning spring 2013, with the intention of moving the administrative unit, faculty offices, a majority of the library, seminar spaces and a limited number of studio spaces into 1 Spadina in the spring of 2014. Based on the current schematic design approximately 2100 nasm of the 6330 nasm space program will be accommodated in renovated space in the original building. As well, a portion of the basement is to be renovated to provide for the infrastructure of the entire project. The budget for this phase was based on a gross area of 4600 sq.m.
Spectacular. The way it responds to / reinterprets the pointed architecture of the Neo Gothic building is brilliant. I love how it creates a new topography by digging down into the site, lifting up the ground plain and breaking it apart. Wonderful.