The Burden of Gravity, an anthology of poems by Shannon McConnell “challenges readers to consider how we, in the aftermath of de-institutionalization, choose to remember institutions like Woodlands School”.
LEES+Associates in collaboration with many individuals who gave generously of their time and ideas, designed a memorial garden to serve as a beautiful gathering place honouring former Woodlands residents.
The Woodlands Memorial Garden project involved the recovery of some 3,000 previously removed headstones marking the graves of former residents of the Woodlands School. This work has extended over several years from guiding the concept development process, design development to construction of the Woodlands Memorial Gardens.
Work on this project remains ongoing as more headstones are discovered offsite.
In the last few years, LEES + Associates has been working on the planning and design of a new cemetery in western Canada. The cemetery is expected to open in 2019 with the landscape contract slated to go to tender this fall.
The LEES + Associates design team hopes to incorporate basalt pillars and Alberta Sandstone into feature areas of the new cemetery; Madoc Hill and Leila Zeppelin from the team had a great visit to Bedrock Natural Stone last week to select stones for the project.
Here are a few photos from their visit.
We’re pleased to announce that on Nov. 1, 2017, Vancouver City Council voted to support the development and construction of a new seniors’ centre adjacent to Sunset Community Centre in south Vancouver.
THAT Council support development and the construction of a Seniors’ Centre of at least 10,000 square feet to be located adjacent to the existing Sunset Community Centre.
THAT Council direct staff to pursue funding opportunities to cost-share the Sunset Seniors’ Centre project, currently estimated to cost up to $10 million, with the Federal and Provincial governments and report back to Council.
THAT Council direct staff to form a building committee for the Sunset Seniors’ Centre Project, including representatives from the Vancouver Park Board, the Sunset Community Centre Association, Seniors’ Advisory Committee, Persons with Disabilities Advisory Committee and LGBTQ2+ Advisory Committee.
We’re pleased to see construction underway at Humber Bay Shores Park in Toronto. The project, aimed at improving trail networks and bicycle connections at the park is expected to be completed in the summer of 2018.
Working with the City of Toronto, LEES+Associates completed the trail design including conceptual design through to construction documents, and a continuous linkage across the Lake Ontario shoreline as part of the Waterfront Trail System. When completed, the enhanced public space hopes to accommodate the increased popularity of the waterfront park and trail system.
LEES+Associates is excited to be working in collaboration with Nancy Mackin of Mackin + Associates on the conceptual design of the Tsawwassen First Nations Youth Centre. We had our second open house this week, engaging teens and K-7 kids in the visioning of their new Youth Facility.
We’re excited to share the master’s thesis of our newest staff member Ali Canning.
Ali, a recent graduate from the University of British Columbia’s Master of Landscape Architecture program, was invited by the City of Vancouver to present this thesis to the Park Board.
WALLED OFF: Re-imagining the Stanley Park Coastline
Thesis Project: Ali Canning
With the need to adapt to changing climates and emphasis on protecting valuable coastal habitats, this thesis researches ways in which Vancouver can reimagine its connection to the marine environment. Intertidal landscapes provide disproportionately high levels of ecosystem services, making coastal and estuarine landscapes some of the most valuable on earth. However, our city is currently divided from its aquatic habitats with the beloved, but environmentally damaging seawall. Created to protect Stanley Park from erosion, the seawall is an iconic symbol of Vancouver with millions of people coming to visit it each year. However, rising tides and increasingly frequent storm events threaten its integrity and require constant maintenance and repair. With environmental pressures growing and future predictions calling for a new coastal adaption strategy, there is an opportunity to reimagine the interface between land and sea and increase resiliency within the park. Using design solutions based in both ecology and social awareness, landscape architecture can be used to redesign shoreline areas into multifunctional landscapes that restore marine habitat, are resilient to future change, and provide a place for people to reconnect with our oceans.
Due to its high vulnerability to storm events and inland flooding, the final design focuses on the landscape from Ferguson Point to Second Beach. A dynamic park is created allowing users to explore island marsh boardwalks, meander through sand dunes and investigate tide pools. With an integrated nature house and varying trail networks, this project creates a stimulating landscape that strengthens our relationship with the coastal environment we treasure.
LEES+Associates prepared the final concept and construction drawings for a proposed new town square in the Town of Lake Cowichan on Vancouver Island. The community wanted to include a place for public art within the square, but by the time the project went to construction, what that art would be had not yet been determined.
The strategy was to provide a flexible landscaped space within the central roundabout of the square. In-ground lighting and a removable cobble surface were installed to permit a future installation.
That installation took place in November 2015, with the ceremonial raising of a stunning, monumental totem pole. Carved by Hupacasath artist and historian Ron Hamilton, the pole was presented to the Town of Lake Cowichan by Chief Livingstone as a gift from the Lake Cowichan First Nation:
“’Our pole will reflect the past, present and future of our community,’ said Chief’s Livingstone’s wife, Hakuum. The top of the pole features three faces. Hamilton explained that one face represents Ts’uubaa-asatx people of the past, the ancestors.”
And it was for this face that the new square was named, Ts’uubaa-asatx Square.
We took a stroll recently to admire the changing autumn foliage at the Komagata Maru Memorial. This project involved a monument design to commemorate a 1914 incident that witnessed 376 passengers from India escorted out of Vancouver’s Coal Harbour aboard the steamship Komagata Maru.
Steel panels, set within the surrounding landscape, simulate the ship’s hull with small openings to reflect the cascading waves of Vancouver’s harbour. A centrally located glass panel provides a historical narrative of the incident for visitors, and presents a poignant historic image from a tragic day in Canadian immigration history.