Toronto IES 2022 Illumination Section Award for Interior Lighting Design.

Posted on Oct 27, 2022

This diminutive 1950’s buff brick building is centrally located in a heritage neighbourhood, however, it was an underutilized asset of the Archdiocese of Toronto, due to its tired look and inefficient envelope.  The decision to upgrade to house outreach services for refugees and youth as well as storage facilities for artifact and paper archives led to bold renovations with ambitious goals.  An overhaul to the building envelope and infrastructure enabled Class A Control Museum Standards and accessibility for diverse user groups. Taking the mid-century modern origins as a design cue, we created bright open office spaces with playful yet efficient lighting, furnishings, and finishes.  Integrating the uplifting ambiance with specialized HVAC systems within a modest ceiling height was one of the primary challenges.  It was possible to expose the structure and ductwork, paint it white, and create a unique lighting pattern among acoustical panels using custom-length continuous LED direct-indirect linear suspension fixtures in 3500K CCT.  In areas with dropped drywall ceilings, the linear light lines were continued with recessed to match.

The linear lighting motif was carried throughout all spaces, acting as both functional light and visual unifier.  Meeting areas received colourful acoustic felt pendants for focused light.  Original glass shades were salvaged and retrofitted with new LED and red cables to provide an informal atmosphere in the Staff Lounge.  Accent lighting is integrated into millwork for uplight, tasks, and archival display.  Stair circulation is marked with cross-shaped direct/indirect pendants, a subtle reference to the religious organization.  A unique challenge in this building was providing and controlling daylight for the different types of work and programming taking place.  All windows have one or two layers of light control depending on the sensitivity of work to UV light.  All lighting is controlled by a BAS with local occupancy sensors and dimming control.