Winter Stations design competition receives 378 entries from around the world

After a successful inaugural year, Winter Stations is returning to transform Toronto’s empty lifeguard stations into interactive, wintertime public art installations. The international design competition, founded by RAW Design, Ferris + Associates and Curio, almost doubled last year’s participation with 378 submissions from artists, designers and landscape architects in 49 countries.

Competitors were challenged to create temporary wintertime installations anchored to the utilitarian lifeguard stations along Toronto’s east end beaches. This year’s theme, Freeze/Thaw, asked designers and artists to respond to the changing climactic conditions and transitions of the Toronto winter.

The international design community has continued to impress us with its ambitious submissions for this year’s Winter Stations competition,” says Ted Merrick, Ferris + Associates. “Our hope is that the creativity and playfulness in the selected designs will draw people outdoors and inspire people to look at the spaces around us from different perspectives.”

“Our goal is to eventually transform every hibernating lifeguard stand along Toronto’s east beaches,” says Roland Rom Colthoff, RAW Design. “It’s only through the generous support of our partners and sponsors that we have been able to launch and grow Winter Stations.”

To help cover the production costs, Winter Stations is also launching an Indiegogo campaign, with the goal of crowdfunding an additional station. Indiegogo participants have the opportunity to get their hands on some great perks, including posters and postcards of the winning stations and a private meet-and-greet with the winning artists.

“We’re trending towards doubling the number of stations that were built in year one. The hope is that crowdfunding can help us push that growth even further,” adds Merrick.

Winter Stations sponsors for 2016 include the Ontario Association of Architects, Great Gulf, Diamante Developments, Demirov Fine Homes, The Rockport Group, Fieldgate Homes, Urban Capital, as well as the Ontario Association of Landscape Architects, the Design Exchange and the City of Toronto.

The education component of the competition has also grown from one to four schools for 2016. Ryerson University’s Faculty of Engineering and Architectural Sciences, University of Toronto’s John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design, OCAD University’s School of Environmental Design and Laurentian University’s Faculty of Science, Engineering and Architecture have each committed to leading teams of students who will be responsible for transforming four of the lifeguard stations this year.

The winners of the Winter Stations competition will be announced in early January 2016. This year’s Jury includes Jane Hutton, Landscape Architect/Assistant Professor, Harvard University GSD; Alex Josephson, Architect/Co-founder, Partisans Architecture; Lily Jeon and Diana Koncan, Winter Stations 2015 Winners (Snowcone); Catherine Osborne, Editor-in-chief, Azure Magazine; and 2016 Jury Chair Lisa Rochon, Senior Fellow, Global Cities Institute U of T and Founder, Friends of the Beach Parks.

All 2016 installations will be unveiled on February 15, 2016 and will be available for viewing until March 19, 2016.

To check out all 378 design submissions in anticipation of the winner’s announcement and to learn more about the Indiegogo campaign, please visit

Contribute to the Indiegogo campaign by visiting–2#/.

Winter Stations submission


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