Award of Excellence Winner
North East Transit Garage
gh3 (lead design architects) with Morrison Hershfield (prime consultant)
The North East Transit Garage is big architecture on a big site. The 38,340-square-metre building will accommodate approximately 320 workers and 300 buses, and includes the Edmonton Transit System’s administrative offices. Bordered by the Trans-Canada Highway, the Edmonton LRT corridor and Fort Road, the 9.7-hectare site was once industrial; the only artifact remaining from its previous use, a 50-metre-tall Canada Packers smokestack, is preserved.
The project performs at the scale of urban infrastructure, while providing more intimately scaled amenities for transit employees. Sheathed in corrugated stainless steel panels and mirrored glass, the building has an elemental and simply articulated presence. It invokes the industrial legacy of the site and of modern architecture, without lapsing into nostalgia for either.
Roof lanterns bring diffused natural daylight into the workplaces, while social areas such as the cafeteria enjoy views to a garden and the historic smokestack. The alignment of angled walls and a footpath create visual and physical connections across the site.
The need to remove three metres of contaminated soil provides an opportunity to locate one level of employee parking under the bus storage area, freeing up space to insert a mediating landscape of trees, bioswales and gabion walls between the vast building and the surrounding traffic.
CLIENT The City of Edmonton
ARCHITECT TEAM gh3—Pat Hanson, Diana Gerrard, Raymond Chow, Louise Clavin, Jeffrey Deng, Byron White, Joel Di Giacomo, Daehee Kim, John McKenna, Bernard Jin. Morrison Hershfiled—Catherine Karakatsanis, Haris Wijayasiri, Andrew Aguanno, Ali Hosseinian, Bina Puri.
ENGINEERING/CODE/LEED Morrison Hershfield
AREA 38,340 m²
BUDGET $123 M
STATUS Under construction, anticipated completion October 2018