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DAS Debut at Doors Open

June 04, 2024

Photos 4 & 5 by DAS student Irene Kim

The Department of Architectural Science participated in its first Doors Open Toronto, and it was an overwhelming success. More than 600 visitors, including alumni, prospective students, and community members, flocked to our atriums, gallery, workshop and studio spaces to experience the vibe of life and learning at DAS!

Doors Open Toronto is a long-standing tradition that invites the public to explore the city’s most cherished buildings and sites free of charge. Since its inception in 2000, Doors Open has attracted over two million visits to nearly 700 unique locations, making it the largest event of its kind in Canada. Each May, the event provides rare access to places typically closed to the public, offering a unique glimpse into the city’s architectural and cultural treasures, and activities for all ages.

Our participation in DOT showcased the exceptional work of our students via the Year End Show and the design legacy of Ron Thom Associates, as our school was one of the last realized projects by Thom, with partner and former DAS Chair Michael Miller. Community members and DOT regulars were thrilled to see our architecture school included in the list of venues, and to get inside a design of Thom, whose works also include Massey College at the University of Toronto, the master plan for Trent University, including the Bata Library and the Champlain and Lady Eaton Colleges, the Toronto Zoo, the Shaw Festival Theatre in Niagara-on-the-Lake, and numerous houses in British Columbia celebrated as examples of west-coast modernism.

Current and prospective students and their families, as well as graduates from decades past, were excited to see how our department and institution are evolving. Other visitors with ties to the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry, admired the innovative work of the next generation of professionals, while artists and designers found inspiration in our students' drawings and models.

It was moving to meet so many community members with strong links and affection for this building and its programs. Numerous guests remarked on the excellent work and how exciting it was to wander through our studios, gallery, and making spaces.

Professor Lisa Landrum, Department Chair

Another highlight was a model of downtown Toronto by Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG), with DAS student support, which was part of The Language of Performance - A Carbon Future exhibition from March 2024. Envisioning a future skyline of sustainable towers, this luminous urban landscape captivated visitors as they imagined prospective transformations of their own neighborhoods and Toronto's skyline.

Special thanks go to the DOT organizers for their impeccable planning and knowledgeable volunteers, the Toronto Society of Architects (TSA) for their additional support and outreach, and DAS student helpers. 

We look forward to future participation in DOT and continuing to share the innovative work of our students with the public!