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September 21 and 22
2 days, 2 disciplines, 2 ways to participate – defining our professional roles and uniting to build more equitable, accessible and inspired communities.
The Meadoway is a 16-kilometre hydro corridor turned active transportation link, restored meadow habitat, and public green space in Scarborough. It will become one of Canada’s largest linear urban parks, stretching from the Don River to the Rouge National Urban Park. The trail will cross over five municipal wards, 13 neighbourhoods, and over 170,000 people just within its core study area. The diversity of Scarborough’s population and its land uses beg the question: how do demographics — for example, age, language, occupation or income — inform our engagement process, and ultimately, the design of the corridor? In the digital age, how was engagement redefined for social media? As a large opportunity for connecting schools, businesses, hospitals, and trails, how did the engagement process represent the communities that will experience this greenspace?
In this session, design firm Perkins and Will, along with Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, walk through the innovative city-building initiative of The Meadoway. Demographic, psychographic, and behavioural data were used in tandem with creative mediums, such as rendered visualizations, 3D virtual-reality experiences, animations, and tactile tools like physical models. Public engagement was a strong thread throughout the design process and continues to this day as the project evolves. Participants will walk away with a toolkit of engagement strategies they can apply to their own communities, both small, localized projects as well as large-scale plans and ideas.