The 2017 NXT City Prize finalists! Image

The 2017 NXT City Prize finalists!

By Lucas DeClavasio on Nov 07, 2017

The finalists have been announced for the 2017 NXT City Prize! The next big public space initiative for the City of Toronto could be one of these!

Last year, Lucas DeClavasio, Andrew Patterson and their team at Wysp Creative won first place with their Streetcar Safety Murals idea. Wysp is now working with the City of Toronto to test the concept within the King Street Pilot, which will roll out this month. The murals will be implemented in the new year.

This year, NXT City had four specific categories for the idea competition; The Wellington Destructor Site, The Bentway, Liberty Market Galleria, and Civic Tech.

There were many creative and innovative submissions, all of which seem like they would be interesting additions to the city’s public realm. Art, technology, and community development are common themes among all the finalists.

2017 NXT City Prize

For the Wellington Destructor, a couple of the finalists flip the site’s former use, proposing the space be used for creation as opposed to destruction (the Destructor used to be a waste management facility).

The City Creator by Holly Templeton and Philip Liu features an exhibition space, a Toronto museum, a media and IT hub for micro-firms, additional office space, and Future Lab for more micro-firms. Basically, it’s a space dedicated to creators and developers who are shaping the future of the city’s urban growth.

For The Bentway (the public space in development under the Gardiner near Bathurst), finalists focused on wayfinding (as per the challenge brief). The Bentway: Arrw by Sarah Anne Fleming uses augmented reality to guide Bentway patrons, while Follow The Statues by Canh Phan Thi proposes First Nation inspired statues to point the way.  

The Liberty Market Galleria is an interesting space with unlimited possibilities. A couple of the finalists propose an urban garden/greenhouse (The Urban Greenhouse by Rachel Tam and Living Passage by Jeta Nallbani). There is also a submission to make the whole space an urban living room (Urban Living Room by Gabriel Choo and Aurelia Chan).   

2017 NXT City Prize

Finally, there’s the Civic Tech category for all the mobile and technology focused submissions.

Buskeronto by Hesam Alavi and Niayesh Abdolkarimi is a mobile app that allows the city’s buskers to create profiles and post their locations. Users can find artists, invite friends and learn more about the buskers in Toronto.

Visions from the 6 by Lingfei Liu uses augmented reality to give you a peek at some of the proposals for the city’s public spaces.

It’s also worth noting that last year’s winners, Lucas and Andrew, are finalists again in the Civic Tech category with their submission, Public Space Permits. With the app, they aim to streamline the process of finding, applying, paying, and acquiring a permit for Toronto’s public spaces.

There are plenty other finalists worth checking out, so do it now at nxtcity.ca. The 2017 NXT City Prize winners will be announced at the Gladstone on November 28th.

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