Courtyard becomes rotunda inside Toronto university building by Moriyama & Teshima

Related story: University library by RH+ Architecture encased within a timber lattice
In addition to enclosing the original central courtyard to create a multipurpose space at the heart of the facility, the architects introduced a rectangular extension. Behind the   aluminium facade of this innovation centre for the University of Toronto Mississauga, local office Moriyama Teshima Architects has converted   a courtyard into a   rotunda with a glass roof   (+ slideshow). As with on the development of the original Kaneff Centre, the architects worked with local firm PCL Construction to ensure the renovation and extension maintain the same aesthetic and engineering standards. The upper storeys project over the glazed ground floor to provide a sheltered route for students during inclement weather. Photography is by Shai Gil. Short sets of steps positioned at openings around the edge of the circular corridor lead into the communal space, which can be used for meetings or relaxation by students and staff. “The strategy to address the existing building was incremental,” said Moriyama Teshima Architects principal Carol Phillips. This balances the plan and accommodates services including a new reception and offices for the faculties of economics and management. Natural light from high level windows filters through timber slats that reference   the external facade treatment. The university asked Moriyama Teshima Architects to upgrade an earlier building of its own design – the Kaneff Centre completed in 1992 at the campus located 33 kilometres west of central Toronto – to provide new amenities for students and staff alongside the existing auditorium, classrooms and offices. “Rather than subsuming the original building, we inserted discrete additions, giving presence to each of the major volumes and functions of the building while resolving the fragmented form of the existing structure.”

The building’s first and second floors are wrapped in white powder-coated vertical aluminium fins that are intended to complement the robust forms of its Brutalist neighbours and alter its appearance depending on the viewing angle.

Updated: 14.12.2014 — 03:16