Winners Announced for 2019 Heritage Toronto Awards

The winners of the 2019 Heritage Toronto Awards were announced at a sold-out ceremony held at The Carlu last week. This year marked 45 years of the awards, which recognize extraordinary contributions to the conservation and celebration of Toronto’s heritage.

Winners were named in four categories, based on independently judging by a jury of experts. The categories included: William Greer Built Heritage, Community Heritage, Public History, and Book. A Members’ Choice Award was selected by Heritage Toronto members from among the Community Heritage nominees.

The 2019 Winners

William Greer Built Heritage Awards

The Symes project—by Symesbridge Architects, Jedd Jones Architect, and Philip Goldsmith Architect—features the adaptive reuse of the 1934 Destructor (a city-run garbage incinerator) into a contemporary event space and brewery.

This award was also presented to the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, for transforming an 1874 Gothic Revival building into a modern learning centre. The project was led by NADAAA Architects with ERA Architects, Adamson Associates, and PUBLIC WORKS.

The Community Heritage Award

Anti-Greek Riots tour, led by Hellenic Heritage Foundation. Image: Herman Custodio

The Hellenic Heritage Foundation received this award for educating the public on Hellenic culture and exploring Greek-Canadian history through exhibits and walking tours. In 2018, they commemorated the 100th anniversary of the anti-Greek Riots in Toronto. They are currently working on building a Greek-language online tool for second-language learners.

The Members’ Choice Award

Guild Park tour, led by Friends of Guild Park and Gardens. Image: Ali Mosleh

This award was given to the Friends of Guild Park and Gardens for its work to improve, enhance and protect this urban park. The group has collaborated with numerous organizations to build public awareness and appreciation of the park’s history by offering tours and family-friendly events, as well as re-opening  the Sculptors Cabin.

The Public History Award

At Heart, Citizens of the Esplanade, a short documentary that highlights the untold stories of people in the Esplanade, and If, But, What if?, a collaborative project for The Bentway’s 2018 Fall Season Public Art Exhibition both received this award.

Book Awards

The Book Awards was presented to The Fruitful City: The Enduring Power of the Urban Food Forest, by Helena Moncrieff and Tomorrow is Too Late: Toronto’s Hardcore Punk in the 1980s, by Shawn Chirrey and Derek Emerson


Awards of Distinction

The Heritage Toronto Board presented a Special Achievement Award to archaeologist Ron Williamson for his 40+ year career in culture and heritage research, policy, and education; and a Volunteer Service Award to Lee Sneddon for the depth and breadth of his service to Heritage Toronto, and his work to support health and LGBTQ2+ charities.