The OAA and MPPs unveil 2023 Queen’s Park Picks online

In celebration of Ontario architecture, the Ontario Association of Architects (OAA) and MPPs have unveiled the 2023 Queen’s Park Picks.

Photos: Ontario Association of Architects (OAA)

The Ontario Association of Architects (OAA) is celebrating World Architecture Day this year by revealing the selections in its annual Queen’s Park Picks (QP Picks) program, which is a collaboration with Members of Provincial Parliament (MPPs) across Ontario who share a passion for the built environment.

A special online exhibition, which launched on October 3, 2023, highlights the nine buildings
chosen this year.

Traditionally, World Architecture Day takes place on the first Monday of October. However,
in observance of the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and the provincial government motion cancelling its sitting on October 2, the OAA unveiled the 2023 Queen’s Park Picks online on October 3 instead.

This year’s theme was chosen by the International Union of Architects (UIA) Council and is “Architecture for Resilient Communities.”

Various QP Picks buildings incorporate elements of enduring durability, climate action, and adaptability as principles. These buildings represent a design philosophy that both prioritizes long-term sustainability and recognizes the role of architecture in addressing challenges and place-making within communities.

The OAA invited all Ontario MPPs to reflect on the province’s architectural legacy and nominate a favourite building within their riding earlier this year.

Submissions were received from a total of 44 MPPs representing regions across Ontario, as well as all political parties. Of these, the following nine projects have been selected by a jury of architects to make up the 2023 QP Picks:

Brooklin Community Centre and Library in Whitby
Architect: Perkins+Will Canada Inc.
Nominated by MPP Lorne Coe (Whitby)

Eenchokay Birchstick School in Pikangikum First Nation
Architect: Number Ten Architectural Group
Nominated by MPP Sol Mamakwa (Kiiwetinoong)

Hospice Peterborough in Peterborough
Architect: Lett Architects
Nominated by MPP Dave Smith (Peterborough—Kawartha)

Kingston City Hall in Kingston
Architect: George Browne
Architects of Renovation: Harry P. Smith and Neil MacLennan (1971), Alexander
Wilson Architect Inc. (2001)
Nominated by MPP Ted Hsu (Kingston and the Islands)

Kirkfield Lift Lock in Kirkfield
Engineer: Richard Birdsall Rogers
Architects of Renovation: In2Space (interior design)
Nominated by MPP Laurie Scott (Haliburton–Kawartha Lakes–Brock)

Old Strathroy Post Office in Strathroy
Architect: Thomas Fuller
Nominated by Monte McNaughton (former MPP for Lambton–Kent–Middlesex)

Prosserman Jewish Community Centre in Toronto
Architect: IBI Group (now Arcadis)
Nominated by the Hon. Michael Kerzner (York Centre)

The Public Service Alliance of Canada Building in Ottawa
Architects: Schoeler & Heaton Architects Inc.
Nominated by MPP Joel Harden (Ottawa Centre)

Terrence Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research in Toronto
Architects: Architects Alliance with Behnisch Architekten
Nominated by MPP Jessica Bell (University–Rosedale

“Our annual Queen’s Park Picks program is a testament to Ontario architecture, both in the
present and in the past,” said Settimo Vilardi, president of the OAA’s governing Council.

“This year, as we celebrate virtually, it is heartening to see our MPPs nominating such a
thoughtful range of buildings that not only showcase form and function in different ways, but
also embody sustainability and adaptability. We are happy to continue collaborating with
members of the provincial government in highlighting the importance of architecture in the
everyday lives of Ontarians.”

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