Architecture is for the people

Why the current procurement model needs an overhaul. Architecture, at its core, is for the people. For this reason alone, current procurement practices must be turned on their head. Why? Because quite simply, the wants and needs of the people are being buried in the long-held, staid process of selecting architects. This deeply bureaucratic approach …

The ByWard Market Public Realm Plan: An opinion piece by architect Toon Dreessen

A Modest Vision On February 1st, Ottawa’s Finance and Economic Development Committee approved the ByWard Market Public Realm Plan. This is the culmination of years of consultation and work to engage the public in the design and revamping of this historic civic space. The next steps are for City Council to approve the Committee’s recommendation. …

Support for the ByWard Market Public Realm Plan.

Architects DCA prepared a pro-bono urban design study of the ByWard Market. This was published in draft form in October of 2018 and a final version is available for your interest. We undertook this work for free, out of a love for the ByWard Market. As a source for some of Ottawa’s most beloved civic …

2020 TTMAC Hardsurface Award, Delta Hotel Pool

It’s always a great feeling when hard work gets the recognition it deserves. Euro Tile & Stone’s Delta Hotel Pool restoration project was something that we were excited to collaborate on, as it challenged us to find ways to safeguard the surrounding pool area with leak-proof tiling, while also giving it an aesthetic upgrade. The …

Comments and observations on V5 Energy Evolution Strategy

Thank-You While great to acknowledge partners and supporters, there is an absence of architects and engineers in the document; this speaks to a lack of engagement with the design professions who are responsible for much of the energy consumption (80% of GHG) in the built environment. Future engagement should consider reaching out to the Ontario …

Building Trust: The foundation of respect is see-through.

“Inside every cynical person is a disappointed idealist.” – George Carlin There is something in the Zeitgeist telling us to stop trusting in authority. It’s as though, as a generation passes-on, we are poking at the beliefs they held dear. Sometimes this is a good thing, like moving from eminence-based medicine to evidence-based medicine, and …

Social Infrastructure and the Role Architects Play

A #betterbyward Market is an opportunity for social infrastructure that respects our #heritage and creates a festival space for people” When people talk about spending to stimulate the economy, governments are often quick to turn to “shovel ready” projects. According to Federation of Canadian Municipalities and the CanInfra Challenge, we have an infrastructure deficit of …

A Conversation With City Councillor Catherine McKenney

In an ongoing effort to connect with the distinguished and prominent voices that back our advocacy for better-built environments, we sat down with City Councillor Catherine McKenney at the beautiful new National Arts Centre to discuss equity in the built environment. In addition to accessible transit and para parity for people facing mobility challenges, we …

A Conversation With City Councillor Shawn Menard

As an architecture firm, not only do we have a vision of sustainable cities and a more accessible built environment that puts people first, we’re always looking for ways to strengthen our advocacy by finding prominent voices to join ours in making a better-built environment. Earlier this year, when the world looked much different than …