With winners of our Buildings-by-Height and Heritage/Modern Mashup categories from our fourth annual Year-End Readers' Poll now revealed, we are back with a final category where we asked you to select your favourites from the subway stations built with the recently opened Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension project. Over 660 of you shaped our results for this year, and with just 6 new stations on the extension, with your choice of 3 in each category, the winners represent your favourite half of them.
The AECOM and Parsons Brinckerhoff-designed Highway 407 Station received the fewest votes in this category. While the station is arguably one of the line's more photogenic buildings, its positioning between Highway 407 to the north and a hydro corridor to the south, along with its lack of surface destinations mean that our urban-minded audience may be less familiar with this station than some of the others, placing it in the 6th spot on our list.
Downsview Park is the first station north of Sheppard West (originally Downsview) Station, the previous terminus, and among the first seen by the many visitors on the line's opening day last month. Like Highway 407 Station a few stops to the north, Downsview Park was designed by the team of AECOM and Parsons Brinckerhoff, with swirling public art inside by Panya Clark Espinal. While the station provides an important new connection between the GO and TTC systems, the interior design features all-too-familiar pastel-toned glazed tile finishes, possibly what failed to push it past the #5 spot.
The down-to-the-wire opening and incomplete finishes of Finch West Station weren't enough to dissuade voters, who were taken by the station's colourful and bold features. Could a coming connection to the future Finch West LRT have played a part too? Designed by Will Alsop's aLL Design working with IBI Group, Finch West easily took the #4 spot on our list.
Like Finch West Station, Pioneer Village Station features a colourful design by Will Alsop's aLL Design with IBI Group serving as Architect of Record. The station's striking Corten steel and vibrant red enamelled steel accents create what is easily one of the most recognizable exteriors on the TTC's rapid transit network. These impressive exteriors, as well as the station's striking bus terminal helped to propel Pioneer Village Station to the #3 spot in our poll.
Now the northernmost station on Line 1 and the centrepiece of Vaughan's nascent Downtown, Vaughan Metropolitan Centre Station was designed by Grimshaw Architects working with Arup Canada, and features photogenic touches like a mirrored dome ceiling by Paul Raff Studio. The station may have also won over readers with its importance to the growth of this suburban centre, and rose to the #2 spot in our poll.
As voted by UrbanToronto readers, York University Station is the top station on the TYSSE, selected by a whopping 61.84% of respondents. Designed by Foster + Partners working with Arup Canada, the station consists of two sculptural wings wrapping around a sunken courtyard that allows natural light to filter into the station concourse below. The station's space-age design and its importance to the educational institution it serves likely combined to push York University Station to the top of the poll!
We'd like to extend a special thank you to all of you who took the time to vote in our Year-End Readers' Poll, and we look forward to another exciting year of new building completions.