WilkinsonEyre, Zeidler, Two Row, Arup and PLANT to design landmark bridge in Toronto

The new Equinox Bridge in Toronto will connect the central waterfront to Villiers Island and the expanded park system along the new mouth of the Don River.

Image credit: WilkinsonEyre

WilkinsonEyre, with Zeidler Architecture and Two Row Architect, sustainable development and engineering firm Arup and landscape architects PLANT, have been selected to design the new the Keating Bridge Channel Pedestrian Bridge in Toronto with their winning design concept, Equinox Bridge.

The Equinox Bridge was selected through a design competition commissioned in partnership between Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto, in collaboration with Host Nation and Treaty Holder, the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

The competition design concept aims to foster a connection between people and the water, achieved through lowered vantage points along the deck length. It is also a celebration of the connection between Indigenous communities and nature.

The bridge will provide an elevated path of travel across the water, and aims to be a destination, offering a meeting place to rest and connect with nature.

The fully accessible bridge features a curved S-shaped deck seamlessly connected to the northern bank. Its geometry is made up of two mirrored C-shapes above the centreline of the bridge alignment, which offers a natural cycle calming.

Image credit: WilkinsonEyre

Additionally, the bridge’s orientation aligns with the summer solstice sunset and winter solstice sunrise, both of which can be viewed from seating areas at the two ‘noses’ of the S-shaped deck.  This alignment also frames the equinox sunrise with the arch of the bridge.

The carbon positive design features materials that will be locally sourced whenever possible.

Star constellations serving as natural guides to Indigenous peoples for thousands of years are inscribed into perforated metal screens, and cast shadows on the bridge deck by day. By night, the constellations appear to glow when backlit.

“We have developed a beautiful signature bridge design which will provide Toronto with a striking new destination on the waterfront,” said Dominic Bettison, director, WilkinsonEyre. “As a new gateway, the Equinox Bridge will promote interaction and enjoyment of panoramic views to the city, the island, and the wider lake.”

“The Equinox Bridge is a beautiful form which represents part of the Port Lands larger goal of re-naturalising the mouth of the Don River and reconnecting people to nature on Toronto’s central waterfront,” said Chris Pommer, Partner, PLANT Architect Inc.

The design team will continue to work with Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto, as well as other stakeholders, to evolve the winning design concept into Equinox Bridge’s final design.