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As large North American cities like Toronto densify, their barren and slapdash laneways are drawing renewed attention from urban planners. Their ultimate goal is to update these hinterlands with Jane-Jacobsian ideals by turning them into inviting, inclusive green spaces where local communities can gather. Public Laneway Puncture, led by landscape architect Victoria Taylor, is a prototype of an initiative that incises the impervious paved surface of a laneway with central channels filled with open-grid paving bricks. This more porous surface allows runoff to drain, and both planted and wild greenery to sprout. With the laneway’s hydrologic cycle restored, life can return.

Project: Public Laneway Puncture

Location: Toronto, Canada

Firm: Victoria Taylor Landscape Architect, Canada

Team: Victoria Taylor with Mike Layton, Robert Mays, Jode Roberts, Michelle Senaye and Jonas Spring

Public Laneway Puncture
Azure recognized these three landscape and temporary architecture projects from around the world with 2017 AZ Awards of Merit.

Explore more Award Winners

2018
WinnerLandscape Architecture
Location
Poverty Bay, New Zealand
Firm
Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects, Charlottesville, USA
2013
Winner + People’s ChoiceLandscape Architecture
Location
Montreal, Quebec
Firm
Daoust Lestage, Montreal
Team
Reál Lestage with Caroline Beaulieu, Lucie Bibeau, Renée Daoust, Marie-Josée Gagnon, Marie-Pier Marchand, François Ménard, Stéphane Savoie, Eveline Simard, Catherine St-Marseille and Nathalie Trudel
2014
WinnerLandscape Architecture
Location
Green Bay, Wisconsin
Firm
Stoss Landscape Urbanism
Team
Scott Bishop and Chris Reed with Caroline Aragon, Tim Barner, Cathy Braasch, Nick Buehrens, Steve Carlucci, Jill Desimini, Adrian Fehrmann, Susan Fitzgerald, Carl Frushour, Hiroshi Hatae, Jana Kienitz, Lisl Kotheimer, Shannon Lee, Kristin Malone, Bryan Miyahara, Chris Muskopf, Graham Palmer, Megan Studer and Sarah Wright