Designed by Hariri Pontarini Architects From the architects:
The opening of the new outdoor spaces is part of the ROM’s larger strategic vision to create an engaging streetscape and greater access, while enhancing the ROM’s role as a cultural and community anchor.
“Building community, ensuring accessibility, and playing a meaningful role in people’s lives are key elements of our enduring success,” says Josh Basseches, ROM Director & CEO. “The opening of these spaces not only enhances the pedestrian experience along Bloor Street, it also provides new ways to deepen the ROM’s connection with our community and participate in the urban life of the city.
And the architect Siamak Hairri of Hariri Pontarini echoes this sentiment:
“For me, this project is all about welcome – the realisation of the possibilities and rich opportunities of the public realm as it extends not only forward along Bloor Street but also to the west with its connection to Philosopher’s Walk. A space that creates a warm and open connection between the ROM and the city,” says Hariri.
The Bloor Street exterior has been reimagined and transformed into 1263m² of outdoor public space, anchored by landscaping and architectural design.
Set back from the street on an elevated platform, the Helga and Mike Schmidt Performance Terrace is surrounded by the greenery of the existing Philosopher's Walk, the striking contemporary architecture of the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, and the softly textured stone walls of the ROM's heritage façade.
The soft Algonquin limestone of the terrace and the gently curved edges of the benches surrounding planting beds lush with trees and biodiverse gardens, provide much needed public gathering and seating space in the heart of the city.
The green space, designed by Ronald Holbrook & Associates, will feature a seasonal palette of native, perennial plant species that reflect the ROM’s biodiversity mandate.
“Like one of its alluring galleries, the ROM’s new terrace and plaza is a space that people will want to experience,” said Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport.
“Sitting outside in a beautiful place is one of summer’s greatest pleasures, and with exciting cultural offerings on the menu, the ROM is giving both locals and tourists another reason to visit this impressive Ontario attraction.”
The initiative marks the final phase of the ROM’s Welcome Project, which also includes the reopening of the heritage Weston Entrance on Queen’s Park and complimentary access to the Daphne Cockwell Gallery dedicated to First Peoples art & culture.
Helga and Mike Schmidt Performance Terrace and Reed Family Plaza
Lead Design Architect: Siamak Hariri, Partner-In-Charge; Project Architect: Patrick Cox; Job Captain: Miren Etxezarreta-Aranburu
Mechanical and electrical consultants
The Planning Partnership
Signage and wayfinding
Hariri Pontarini Architects (HPA)
Holbrook + Associates
Hariri Pontarini Architects
21 Sep, 2019
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