Faculty of Design
Seon Hyeong Choi
The Neighborhood (Thesis 2021)
Project Description : The project site is 93m by 141m size of wasted space located at Yonge Street and Finch Avenue neighbourhood, Toronto, which is mostly used as low-rise residential zones. It is quite convenient to live with the subway, commercial and public places while there are deficiency and disconnection that comes from the lack of identity. The thesis design concept is the mixed-use neighborhood with identity and culture. It is the solution for the inconvenience of limited accessibility and the standardized high-rise condo developments of the Yonge Street and Finch Avenue area. The mixed-use design has the harmony of residential, commercial, business, and community uses providing social connection. With diverse programs, it becomes self-sustainable, walkable, and interesting. The alleyways are created to carry cultures and make the space alive with the mingle of every day activities by both residents and visitors. The open green spaces including the linear park, bus stop park, etc. are to broaden user experience and access to nature. The one-way vehicular road is for easier access to the site and the U/G parking makes the neighborhood practical and pedestrian-friendly. The hiking pathways from the project site to the surrounding zones are to improve the connectivity of the community. Total thirty-two buildings are designed to strengthen the identity. The overall building heights are low at the west and gets higher to the east to maximize sun lights and open views. The diverse living spaces expand the resident types from individual to families with a wider range of financial status.
“Thesis Statement(Hypothesis) : A neighbourhood with a strong identity provides a multi-use and optimized living environment. Its identity comes from the co-existence and well-blended harmony of residential and non-residential buildings and spaces. It is a 15-minute walk neighbourhood, where people can easily reach spaces for various purposes such as work, sleep, shopping, entertainment, etc. by a short walk. It forms a well-organized integration of personal and public spaces, indoor and outdoor spaces, and natural and architecture to broaden the user’s range of experience and increase convenience. Also, the accessibility of a variety of programs facilitates strong alleyway cultural formation. In addition, this mixed-use neighbourhood plays an important role in connection residential and urban zones. It allows a natural transition from the low-rise residential area to the high-rise business/commercial areas as it gathers people for a variety of programs. Eventually, communication and culture in our society become stronger. Seeking the enduring design that keeps the culture and authenticity of its identity will cultivate a connected community without being threatened by a standardized high-rise condo building development.”