A mid-size park in Toronto is about to get a major glow, with a large-scale transformation underway for the Mabelle Park green space just northwest of Islington tube station.
Non-profit community arts organization MABELLEarts announced a new project on Thursday, to transform the 2,181 square meter park with the addition of a brand new clubhouse, performance stage and other park features like an upgraded outdoor cooking space , a community table space and a trio of permanent art installations.
The transformation of Mabelle Park builds on nearly 15 years of programming led by a community organization MABELLEarts.
“Since we began our journey on Mabelle Avenue 14 years ago, we have seen MABELLEpark transform from a neglected thoroughfare into a vibrant center where residents of all ages and cultures connect through the joy of create art,” said Leah Houston, Managing Director, MABELLEarts.
“The transformation of MABELLE Park shows us what is possible when we think about who and how our parks respond differently to the needs of residents – it is no longer enough to meet the needs of the nuclear family. Our parks can be inclusive spaces that strengthen neighborhood resilience.
The latest plan includes a collaboration with LGA Architectural Partners and SHIFT Landscape Architects to bring new features to the site, including seating, a covered water feature and a range of plant species such as sumac and sage, chosen to reflect the homelands of residents living in the surrounding Toronto Community Housing apartment towers on Mabelle Avenue.
A press release says the park improvements were planned with input from the community’s intergenerational and multi-ethnic residents, with these groups “being involved throughout the unconventional and imaginative process, collaborating enthusiastically with the various project teams to co-create the final design plans. .
Unlike country houses or common storage sheds in public areas, the transformation project foresees a new 113 m² clubhouse offering a pair of multi-purpose rooms that can be combined into a single space, including workstations for the staff, a kitchenette and public toilets.
The exterior of the pavilion will include a covered terrace that will serve as both a porch for the building and a new performance space.
“The MABELLEpark Clubhouse was designed to reflect the primacy of the park in people’s lives,” said Janna Levitt, Principal of LGA Architectural Partners.
“Small in size, but big in ambition, it will welcome park visitors and embody the imagination and warmth of the organization and the community. Having a permanent building is essential to enhancing the park’s range of programs and to establishing a physical hub for parties and gatherings, day and night.”
“After hours, residents of the surrounding towers will see the clubhouse shine like a beacon in the park.”
Area residents won’t have to wait too long for these park improvements, as the transformation is expected to begin next spring with completion expected in spring 2024.