The recent cold has kept most Torontonians indoors through much of February, but a new series of installations along waterfront of Toronto's Beach neighbourhood are enticing people out with colour, and more importantly, warmth! RAW Design, Ferris + Associates and Curio's inaugural Winter Stations international design competition brought in over 200 submissions by artists, architects and designers from around the world, aiming to bring life to parts of the waterfront usually deemed inhospitable during the cold winters. 

Wing Back by Timothy Olson, image by Elsie Nisonen

Each one of the Winter Stations installations has a life guard station at its heart. Images submitted to the UrbanToronto Flickr Pool by Elsie Nisonen show people out enjoying some of these installations despite the recent bitter cold. In the first image, posted above, we can see crowds interacting with Timothy Olson's 'Wing Back'. This installation evokes the feeling of a tall Wing-Back style chair, adding visual warmth through the use of wood, while providing warmth in the literal sense with a large central fireplace. In the following image we can see one of the more visually dynamic installations, called Snow Cone by Ryerson Architecture students Lily Jeon + Diana Koncan.

Snow Cone by Lily Jeon + Diana Koncan, image by Elsie Nisonen

Snow Cone takes the form of a pine cone-shaped geodesic dome structure, built with 3/4 inch electrical metallic tubing conduits assembled using bolts. The installation is made up of translucent acrylic leaves and transparent coloured acrylic panels bolted to exterior. The exterior of the warming station is easily the most eye-catching of the installations, and the views from within the structure's multicolour panels are equally impressive.

Interior, Snow Cone by Lily Jeon + Diana Koncan, image by Elsie Nisonen

Another winning submission is making use of raw wood as a building medium. Driftwood Throne, by Daniel Madeiros, features steps which allow people to climb to the top of the installation for views of the lake, with three enclave spaces below to provide shelter and warmth.

Driftwood Throne by Daniel Madeiros, image by Elsie Nisonen

The two other winning submissions currently on display are Hot Box by Michaela MacLeod and Nicholas Croft, and Sling Swing by Ed Butler, Dan Wiltshire and Frances McGeown.

Hot Box by Michaela MacLeod and Nicholas Croft

Sling Swing by Ed Butler, Dan Wiltshire and Frances McGeown

With installation complete as of this past Monday, you can check out the five winning submissions at Kew and Balmy Beaches until March 20, 2015. For additional information about the competition, check out Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum thread, or leave a comment using the space provided at the bottom of this page.