In proposal for the redevelopment of Hamilton’s Pier 8, Cityzen Urban Lifestyle and Fernbrook Homes have partnered with four architecture firms—KPMB Architects, Superkul, Omar Gandhi Architect, and GH3, one of four teams now shortlisted as finalists to win a commission to create a landmark community at the west end of Lake Ontario. The diverse team proposes a neighbourhood of varied architectural styles to “pay homage to Hamilton’s industrial heritage and surrounding natural environment”. Cityzen/Fernbrook maintain focus on pedestrian scale, walkability, sustainability and 'coherent diversity', to bring us “Waterfront Shores” .

Birds-eye view of Pier 8, image via City of Hamilton

With 4 architecture firms selected for collaboration on the Pier 8 redevelopment, creating “coherent diversity” throughout the neighbourhood is the goal. A wide array of facades and architectural styles will result in “a neighbourhood that will feel authentic, urban, complex, easily navigated, and which can flexibly address the needs of the community over time.” Brick and steel as main building materials draw reference to Hamilton’s existing heritage structures, including the Ancaster Old Mill, Liuna Station, and Raspberry Farm Silo. The buildings' design focuses on the pedestrian experience, paying particular attention to architecture on each block within the first 6 meters from grade. With each structure designed “in conversation with the adjacent building”, the neighbourhood aims to “create a sense of place for individual residents and commercial tenants.”

Night view of public space at Pier 8, image via City of Hamilton

The 9 Blocks blend together a variety of residential, commercial, and institutional spaces. Between the town homes, condos, and live/work spaces, will be space for a flagship restaurant, craft beer hall, and cafes. An artisan market and fresh market hall is planned on the eastern portion of the site. Fitness centres and amenity spaces will also be available to residents and community members. The development team is committing to 40% of the site remaining as open, outdoor space for community gatherings and seasonal events. A striking circular structure will occupy Block 16 as an institutional space, with an official tenant yet to be determined.

Looking along waterfront at Pier 8, image via City of Hamilton

Bruce Kuwabara, Partner at KPMB and Lead Architect for Pier 8 states “natural beauty and industrial aesthetic combine to create an extraordinary sense of place.” Finding the balance between the built form and outdoor gathering spaces is a guiding aim behind the proposal. Privately Owned Public Spaces (POPS) between the structures will be connected by laneways that prioritize pedestrian and bicycle traffic. The amount of outdoor green space has been maximized “in recognizing the therapeutic and healing benefits of nature.”

Looking along pedestrian walkway at Pier 8, image via City of Hamilton

Linked below, a video gives visual reference for the Cityzen/Fernbrook Homes Pier 8 proposal.

We will return with updates as more information is released on Hamilton’s Pier 8 development. You can see more images from all four proposals by visiting our database file for the project, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out our associated Forum thread, or leave a comment in the space provided on this page.