Sustainable.TO

Local architects propose 10 low-cost green design solutions

Toronto may soon be home to a chain of DIY back­yard bee ho­tels and a nat­u­ral for­est in a down­town al­ley­way. Those were the win­ning de­signs se­lected in the first Homegrown De­sign Chal­lenge, launched this spring by Work­shop Ar­chi­tec­ture and the David Suzuki Foun­da­tion.

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Laureen Harper tours Fairmont Royal York Hotel’s rooftop pollinator bee initiative

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s wife, Laureen, is either very brave, very comfortable around bees, or a bit of both. Harper was at Toronto’s Royal York hotel Sunday to visit the rooftop garden and beehive. Without hesitation she walked right over to the bee enclosure as Executive Chef Collin Thornton removed the cinder block. And then Harper showed her strength.

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Reaching for the Sky-O-Swale

A new landmark is rising in the place of a water tower that was for a time the major physical landmark of East Scarborough’s Kingston-Galloway-Orton Park neighbourhood. The Sky-O-Swale is intended as both an eco-friendly water filtration system and a community gathering space.

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Torontoist Extra, Extra: Bee Hotels

Some bees do not live in a hive with other bees but instead fly about pollinating alone. And while these lone bees might well be perfectly content without bee comrades, they do appreciate being provided with a place to rest—which is why a Toronto company has devised DIY “bee hotels” that will allow you to put these solitary helpers up in your own backyard.

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Bee hotels hang out a welcome sign for solitary bees

Toronto’s population of pollinators is in for a freebie: a complimentary stay at a “bee hotel,” thanks to Toronto firm Sustainable.TO Architecture + Building. Built primarily from recycled materials, these bee billets target solitary pollinator bees, which, as their name suggests, do not live communally like honey bees but still play an important role in the pollination process. The firm’s designs have nabbed a prize in the Homegrown Design Challenge.

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Homegrown Design Challenge Winners Unveiled!

TORONTO, July 9, 2014 — Toronto may soon be home to a chain of DIY backyard bee hotels and a natural forest in a downtown alleyway. Those were the winning designs selected in the first Homegrown Design Challenge, launched this spring by Workshop Architecture and the David Suzuki Foundation.

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