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Toronto Media & Innovation District by Kalbod Design Studio

Project name:
Toronto Media & Innovation District
Architecture firm:
Kalbod Design Studio
Toronto, Canada
Tools used:
Rhinoceros 3D, Twinmotion, Adobe Photoshop
Principal architect:
Mohamad Rahimizadeh
Design team:
Mohamad Rahimizadeh, Shaghayegh Nemati, Zahra Tavasoli, Ziba Baghban, Mahdi Jam, Hadi Koohi, Pardis Ahmadi
Built area:
220,000 m²
Site area:
100 000 m²
Design year:
Completion year:
Shaghayegh Nemati
Concept - Design
Media & Innovation Center

Kalbod Studio: Located in the district-based developed city of Toronto, the Media and innovation center is carefully sited close to similar culture and entertainment-based districts to be able to make a connection with the existing buildings both in functional and physical ways. By addressing social resiliency in this area, the project is designed to become a suitable place for everyone, providing an exciting space for learning, practicing, performing, and exploring. To ensure this concept will extend to the form of the buildings and evoke a sense of curiosity, they are designed organically to become an eyecatcher among the cube-shaped neighboring buildings. Inspired by the cross sections of nationally loved maple trees, the buildings take organic forms with open and green spaces on the upper levels mimicking the dark spots visible on cross sections of dead maple trees. These shapes get reduced by the size as they get closer to the sea surface where they will be placed on bearing pilots reaching deep into the water.

To seek out a solution for the emerging natural disasters like the drastic rise of sea levels or massive floods, the buildings are piloted high above the water to resemble the nearby trees floating on the surface of the water giving it a sense of lightness while providing safety in time of need. Also, there are two different types of access routes designed for these buildings on two levels, one is deep in the ground and reaches the buildings from below providing quick access to the city’s public transport like metro stations, while the other one is located 15 meters high above the body of water giving access to the buildings from above. These two routes both are designed and specialized for bicycles and pedestrians, they not just provide safety during a natural disaster but also creates a shelter from the cold and windy weather of the northern seashores.This Media district consists of four different zones each hosting 3-6 separate buildings, working together to create a calm and suitable place for artists, citizens, visitors, and also workers.

The innovation zones include the Educational and Recording/Performing zones which are located next to each other, having some shared spaces in between to be able to work and connect more easily while the cultural and entertainment zones are considerably distanced from them to be more distinguished from them, providing a sense of privacy for the innovation zones. The location of each zone is precisely chosen to require the shortest possible routes to connect the buildings to each other while having enough open spaces between them to provide a safe route for maritime transportation, from massive ships to cruising boats. The buildings shapes and the choice of Bio-Based materials have shaped water resistance massive forms which will survive strong floods and continue to function in higher levels of sea surface. Unlike most buildings founded in water. With bio-based materials, organic forms and structural solutions, these building are shaped and designed to create a better connection between architecture, technology and nature.

By Liliana Alvarez

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