Student: Sarah Ives
Advisor: Martin Bressani
Studio: Design Studio Option (DST)
Year/Term: Fall 2016
The debris of Toronto’s past lies hidden within the artificial wilderness of The Leslie Street Spit. Since its inception in 1959, The Spit has served as a convenient dumping ground for demolished buildings, among them some of the city’s most treasured architectural artifacts. Over the years, this landfill has transformed into a natural landscape with luxuriant vegetation, wildlife, and even beaches. These two dimensions are kept separate by its cycle of use: during the day, sand and rocks are dumped as landfill; during the evenings and weekends, the visitors and citizens of Toronto use it as a public park. As the site is more and more appreciated as a unique place far away from the bustle of the city, the discarded construction materials that have made this area unique are progressively banned from the site. I propose to reverse this tendency: rather than redirecting waste elsewhere, the project uses the artificial topography created by mounds of bricks, foam, concrete, wood, stone, and plastic towards artistic and didactic aims, making waste management a positive element within Toronto’s public realm. I wish to demonstrate that the seemingly undesirable can be transfigured into something beautifully provocative.