Toronto Architects on the Cutting Edge

Toronto Architects on the Cutting Edge

  • Janice Williams
  • 12/8/22

Toronto is one of the most populated cities in Canada and one of the world's leading multicultural epicenters. When it comes to architecture in this city, it's as vibrant and eclectic as the residents and features a glorious mixture of styles. Many of the homes for sale in Kleinburg feature cutting-edge architecture and boundary-pushing designs. Whether you're looking at the glass high-rises, historic buildings that line the shores of Lake Ontario, or the more boundary-pushing and innovative methods of buildings downtown, it's a site to see.
We can consider the idea of "cutting-edge" architecture in several ways. The concept seeks to push the limits of traditional architectural principles to create a seamless blending of urban and rural, internal and external, and other "risk-taking" designs that allow us to redefine the world around us. Cutting-edge can also mean a leading position in the field, and these architects certainly fall into that category. Here are some of the most innovative and cutting-edge architects in Toronto.

Omar Gandhi

Having spent time working in Halifax and Toronto, Omar focuses on residential projects that focus on the rural vernacular of eastern Canada. He uses natural wood, expansive windows that face the landscaping, and a contemporary sensibility to tie it all together. He claims to find influence from his previous firm, MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects, which can be seen in many of his projects.
You can find his work in locations such as:
  • Prime Seafood Palace: considered a "light-filled wood cathedral" with a bland exterior, the interior of this space truly creates a timeless design that is as unique as it is innovative.

  • The Teph Inlet house: built for a family, this two-story home and guest house feature a cuboid shape that lines up with the rectangular pool and outdoor spaces. The lower level is encased in glass windows to offer expansive views of Nova Scotia.
Various other samples of his work are scattered throughout the Toronto, Halifax, and Nova Scotia areas.

Lola Sheppard

Another driving force in the architectural world is Lola Sheppard, who uses her curiosity and desire to experiment to push the boundaries of design. Her firm is said to operate within a blending of architecture, landscaping, and urbanism, not entirely unlike the previous architect. Using vernaculars and how we can interpret them in various ways, she creates provocative designs that rethink the approach to traditional practices. Her firm, Lateral Office, participated in the Chicago Architecture Biennial in 2015, showcasing various designs for modern campsites.
Her firm has won various awards, and you can find samples of her designs across North America.

Richard Wengle

Richard Wengle is one of North America's most admired and respected designers and architects. His custom-designed luxury homes create warmth and emotion for all who enter them. He believes that any good architecture is going to touch on emotion first. The act of looking at something should create a feeling within you, whether it be excitement, curiosity, warmth, or vitality. His use of space and light seeks to capture experiences and emotions and spark memories that will allow you to appreciate the designs.
His firm started small, with less than 20 professionals in total, because he wanted to be involved in every project to keep the vision and design as consistent as possible. The signature concepts of this firm are detail, proportion, and style, which are seen throughout the pragmatic designs in his homes. While you'll see his style in many exclusive neighborhoods throughout the Toronto area, the work on 89 Avenue Road is front and center.
The 89 Avenue Road construction is a condominium done in pre-war style and will be a 20-story luxury boutique that transports you to Central Park in New York City.

Spaces by Rohan

Rohan Walters, principal designer of Spaces by Rohan - an independent design firm - has been establishing itself in the area since 1987. The firm has various partners, including designers, architects, engineers, interior designers, investors, and homeowners seeking to create unique projects.
His projects include several "alternative" homes in Toronto, which this firm was responsible for designing and constructing. Those include:
  • The Tower House: located at 157 Coxwell Avenue, this home is often called a "house in a box," "Rubik's Cube on stilts," and a "mad house." This is a site to behold a tall and colorful home with one bedroom and several eco-friendly touches like radiant floor heating and a natural ventilation system.

  • The Triangle House: located at 1292 College Street.

  • The Driveway House: located at 1294 College Street, is situated in the driveway of the Triangle House. The home offers 1,084 square feet and is considered experimental because, despite the appearance, it's spacious. The dexterity of its design allows space to be maximized to its fullest potential. It's built from mason blocks and has insulated walls and ceilings that help maintain temperature.
These projects were designed to consider flexible housing amid the area's various social constructs and changing demographics. They are sustainable in design and use multiple innovative technology techniques and materials to help push the boundaries of architecture and home design toward a more sustainable future. This is why you'll find much of Rohan's work in driveways, backyards, and other spaces that you wouldn't usually do because he seeks to create new urban locations for the future of housing developments.
These projects were acknowledged in UTOPIA and Coach house books, plus featured in several media sources like HGTV, The Toronto Star, and Space Television Network. If you want a glimpse at Rohan's ability to create a creative and unique yet economically appropriate solution, these houses showcase that perfectly.
Many other architects in Toronto seek to push cutting-edge designs, which is evident as you move through the city. Everywhere you turn, new and innovative homes, office buildings, restaurants, and hotels are built that create jaw-dropping and unique designs.
If you're considering moving to the Toronto area, or you'd like to look at new homes in Kleinburg, contact me. I'm Janice Williams, and I'd love to help you get started on your search.

*Header photo courtesy of Pexels

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