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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

The new gateways to the city?

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Whether travelling into Toronto by vehicle or transit, there is little indication that you've arrived at the border of the city besides the modest blue signs containing its name and population.

Currently, Toronto's City Planning division is contemplating the construction of three signature "gateways" near the edges and entrances of the city.

The three locations under consideration are Dixon and Airport roads in the west, Eglinton, Victoria Park, and O'Conner in the east, and at the exits of the 401 at Yonge Street in the north.

The projects are being planned by the City and two Toronto architecture firms, Sweeny Sterling Finlayson & Co., and the IBI Group. Each site is unique, so each design differs greatly in scope and appearance.

Renderings of the eastern and western entrances involve contemporary public art, while the design of the northern entrance uses light and vegetation features.

Even though City Council is facing a serious budget crunch, increased funding for the Civic Improvement Program (along with some private investment) could kickstart the construction of one of the gateways this year. Currently, there is no timeline set for full implementation of the projects.

The eastern gateway is to be located at Eglinton and Victoria Park.