Within architectural disciplines, social sustainability can be employed through demonstrating lasting social impacts on a community via placemaking. Interior architecture more specifically can play a principal role in facilitating the experiences and relationships that are fostered within place and is fundamental to how people engage and identify in society. How can the normative practices and process of interior architecture and parallel disciplines of placemaking be propelled to ensure that the spaces and communities that are created have lasting positive impact on society?
As a socially, politically, and physically dynamic landmark, Ontario Place is used as the primary site of investigation. Ontario Place, designed by Eberhard Zeidler and opened in 1971, was deemed one of the most innovative waterfronts in the world. Still active as a public park since its closure in 2012, questions of its future have remained futile. Plans for redevelopment have instigated conversations as to whether the landmark should remain primarily as a public space or bestowed to private partnerships.
This exhibition showcases selected works from a culminating Interior Design Studio at the Interior Design at the Creative School, Toronto Metropolitan University (Winter 2022). The Studio broadens the conversation of interior designers’ social impacts on community through the perspective of social sustainability. Students were challenged to explore the interior designer’s role in the multidisciplinary sphere of placemaking through the conceptualization of a responsible adaptive-reuse of existing Ontario Place infrastructure. Ultimately, the challenge allowed students to explore design solutions through themes of cultural heritage and preservation, community engagement, and equitable/inclusive design practices.
The work showcases studies, design proposals, and interactive artifacts of varying scales that allow users to explore various experiences of Ontario Place. Visitors will have the opportunity to curate their own experiences and memories of Ontario Place as it currently exists in the past, present, and future.