TORONTO: Gregg Lintern, Chief Planner for the City of Toronto, and Ann Marie Vaughan, President and CEO, Humber College, celebrated the achievements of a partnership between the City and Humber College.
Toronto city has partnered with Humber College through the college’s Centres of Innovation Network to create updates to TinyTO – the model of downtown Toronto that resides in the lobby of City Hall.
Designed and produced by Humber students in Industrial Design, Interior Design, Graphic Design, User Experience Design and Game Programming, the updates to TinyTO will serve as a tool to help city planners, developers and residents envision redevelopment options, consider growth and expansion patterns, and imagine the future. The newest addition to the model was also unveiled – a 3D printed model of City Hall and the Toronto Sign, along with plans for additional enhancements including an Augmented Reality component.
The partnership saw a multi-disciplinary team of Humber students and faculty members participate in the ideation process for a new TinyTO model. Their work took place through coursework and workshops hosted at City Hall and Humber College’s Barrett Centre for Technology Innovation, culminating in a presentation of processes and learnings to staff and three new segments of the model along Toronto’s ever-evolving waterfront.
Recent partnership achievements include:
• 2020 – The initial partnership saw a successful “Hackathon” brainstorming event
• 2021 – Students focused on producing concepts and a vision for the model of the future
• 2022 – New, updated tiles for the model were produced and began to be installed
The team worked closely with City staff to design and produce new sections of the model using the City’s 3D Massing dataset: https://open.toronto.ca/dataset/3d-massing/. The existing model consists of 12 tiles (in a four by three tile grid) with each tile measuring 1.2 metres x 1.2 metres; the existing model is at a scale of 1:1250. New additions to the model are at a scale of 1:1500. This decrease in scale allows for more of the city to be captured in the model.
The new additions have been designed with flexibility in mind, for example, splitting each tile into four quarters for more accessible transport. The new sections also consist of three components: 3D-printed buildings that sit on top of acrylic blocks with a vinyl base map underneath to allow each component to be updated, maintained and replaced when necessary.
The vision for the model is to apply the latest technologies and create a unique real-time, city-wide, interactive multi-media exhibit where residents, tourists, stakeholders and decision-makers can gather to look at the present and emerging forms of the city and discuss planning, urban design, architecture, landscape architecture and development concepts.
This project is an excellent example of the City’s collaboration with one of Toronto’s higher education institution partners facilitated by the City Manager’s Office and CivicLabTO, www.civiclabto.ca.
The model is located on the first floor of City Hall and is available for all visitors to City Hall to view. More information about the model, including a video produced by Humber College highlighting their work, is available on the City’s website: www.toronto.ca/business-economy/partnerships-sponsorships-donations/partner-2/additional-programs/creating-a-new-state-of-the-art-city-model/.