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Facilitating Growth and Change

A national charity, Evergreen funds and facilitates local, sustainable greening projects in schoolyards, parks and communities. The Evergreen Brick Works is a unique environmental community centre and green cities centre for urban sustainability on a natural and industrial heritage site in Toronto. The site is also home to the 10,000 square foot Evergreen headquarters, in a building designed to LEED® Platinum standards. Demonstrating that Evergreen ‘walks the talk’, the offices showcase their ideas on sustainability and liveability.

Toronto, Ontario

Evergreen Engagement

The consultant team conducted two charrettes to discover Evergreen’s interests, issues and wishes, as well as adjacency requirements for the 80 staff. The resulting design concept focused on sustainability, efficiency and effective worker support in comfortable surroundings that would reflect the commitment to community and environment, with contemporary style. It also ensured that the warm character of the former brick and beam warehouse space was brought into the new, efficient, purpose-built building.

Nimble Office Space

Integral aspects of the highly creative organization, collaboration, responsiveness and nimbleness were equally essential in its office space, which easily supported two reorganizations in less than a year. The ‘hot’ desks, shared by staff and volunteers with diverse work schedules, are based on ‘file folder portability’ and easy-logon telephones. Evergreen’s egalitarian ethos also enhances flexibility. The same workstation layout serves both the executive director and 6-week interns. Diagonal planning and long, open tables contribute to an energetic sense of community and shared purpose.

Retaining Warmth

Natural and reclaimed materials and objects add warmth and make sustainability references within the clean modern design. Select pieces of older furniture from the previous office provide functional ornament and a reminder of the organization’s history. Custom-designed storage units straddle the benching system, providing much-needed additional storage.

Project facts

Size: 10,000 sq. ft.
Cost : $20 sq. ft.
Collaborators : Teknion, InterfaceFLOR, General Electric, Brothers Dressier, Molo Design, The Office Source
Client: Evergreen Brick Works

Achievements & Awards

2011
Bronze II Award – Interior Design Commercial, Design Exchange Awards (DX Awards)