Kew Gardens Streetscape, Toronto

Kew Gardens Streetscape, Toronto

Plant Architect Inc.

Toronto, ON

A pastoral gateway to Lake Ontario from Queen Street, the Kew Gardens streetscape marks an important transition between retail frontages and the park’s bucolic landscape. The aim of this project is to transform the streetscape and park north edge into a space that promotes public use, improves pedestrian safety, strengthens view corridors, ensures flexible programming for community events, and evokes and enhances the unique character of Kew Gardens and the surrounding beach neighbourhood. The park landscape has been ‘extended’ northwards to meet the street with a plaza, ‘dune’, extensive seating and floral displays, lighting, a small amphitheatre that faces the park, and new intimate seating and larger ceremony spaces around the cenotaph monument. The new vital public spaces are shaded by preserved and new trees, and framed by a large water jet-cut floral screen bearing Kew founder Joseph Williams’ description of the park: “A place of innocent amusement.”