Institute without Boundaries

Renovate Your Neighbourhood

In Year 3, the focus of the Institute shifted back to North America. We partnered with Habitat for Humanity Canada and Evergreen to “renovate” a street in Toronto. Together, we re-imagined a city without sprawl, a city that balances nature and people, income and access.

The team researched, designed, and communicated a collaboration model for Habitat for Humanity and Evergreen that balances three ideals: greening, inclusivity and capacity building.

Students conducted visitor and site surveys to determine how the Brickworks market responds to the needs of Evergreen, as well as the vendors, their customers and the City of Toronto. They proposed a variety of solutions, from a harvest table that would provide more seating and encourage social interaction, to a gondola that would improve transportation to the site and create a new tourist attraction.

Download Report (PDF)

Seed Harvesting

Students paired up to generate concepts for a poster to promote a seed-harvesting event organized by Evergreen at the Brickworks site. The posters doubled as an educational piece to educate children about wildflowers in Ontario.

Market Store

The team came together to design concept products and a store layout for the future Evergreen marché to be located at the Brickworks.

Based on the Evergreen mandate and the observed market clientele, the store was themed on the idea of a farmhouse that is both a retail and interactive educational experience, a concept that inspired the students’ individual product designs.

Proposals included a refillable educational planting kit for children and a system of reusable, refillable bottles for household products.

Download Presentation (17 MB PDF)

Affordable Housing
IwB students designed a prototypical, one-storey, 1000 square foot home for a Habitat for Humanity site in Mississauga. They then led over 150 George Brown architectural technology students in a three-day charrette to develop houses for the same location, but clustered in multiple units. Their goal was to create models of sustainable, affordable and accessible housing that could be adapted for other locations across North America.
How Do You See the Street?

Students were tasked with creating an installation for the IwB display case in the newly renovated School of Design, which officially opened in November 2008. They took the opportunity to begin investigating how a holistic, interdisciplinary approach can affect how we “see” the street, and subsequently how we design neighbourhoods.

They reached out to the design community and public and solicited responses from a wide variety of professionals and students, from architects to lawyers. A collection of quotations overlaid on an illustration of a street demonstrates that there are many ways to experience the built environment.

For the third year in a row, IwB students designed and built a booth at the Interior Design Show. In this year, students further explored the notion that collaborative design is the key to balanced, healthy neighbourhoods. The interactive display constructed by the students was open for visitors to share their own perspectives. See the work in progress and the final installation at Exhibition Place, Direct Energy Centre here: 

Watch video: IwB Interior Design Booth Set-Up 2009

Renovate Your Neighbourhood

Renovate Your Neighbourhood is a program for urban renewal, created by the post-graduate student team at the Institute without Boundaries, George Brown College. It is a proposal for a joint project that could be managed by Habitat for Humanity in partnership with Evergreen, or which could be adapted by other community groups.

To learn more about the program and download the Renovate Your Neighbourhood Book, please visit >>

Watch video: World House Year 3 in Review: Work and Play >>

Sign-Up for our Newsletters
Follow Us
About the IWB

The Institute without Boundaries is a Toronto-based studio that works towards collaborative design action and seeks to achieve social, ecological and economic innovation. To learn more click here.

George Brown College
©2011 George Brown College
Ontario Student Assistance Program
Scroll to Top