The Future of the Dupont Employment Lands

Speakers: Sarah Phipps [Senior Planner, Community Planning, City of Toronto]
Helena Grdadolnik [Associate Director, Workshop Architecture]
Mike Stern [Founder, MakeWorks]
When: Tuesday, June 17, 2014 – 6-8pm
Urbanspace Gallery, 401 Richmond Street West, Toronto, ON


Dupont Street – from Dovercourt to Davenport – is at a turning point. This strip of employment lands [recently reclassified as Regeneration Lands], bound by stable residential neighbourhoods to the south and a highly active rail corridor to the north, faces increasing development pressure.

The City Planning Department is completing its study of Dupont Street, addressing the preservation of employment, effects from the nearby rail line, improvements to the public realm and park system and goals for future built form along the street.

Meanwhile, the Green Line Ideas Competition, presented by Workshop Architecture, has ignited a dialogue on how the hydro corridor, just north of the rail line, could be reimagined and revitalized as public space.

And throughout Toronto, a new style of production is developing, with small, light-industrial enterprises and “maker” spaces searching for space that meets their needs and facilitates growth in their sector.

In this context, what is the future of these employment lands – and employment – in the city? The CCE will bring together three panelists to explore this question in the Dupont Street Study area.

Sarah Phipps  [Senior Planner, Community Planning, City of Toronto]
Sarah has worked for the City of Toronto Planning Division for the past 11 years on numerous planning studies, development proposals, neighbourhood plans and special projects. Recently she has worked in the West Queen West Triangle, the Junction Triangle and the Railway Lands, and she is the lead on the Dupont Street Regeneration Study. Sarah enjoys working in tandem with communities on making positive changes in their neighbourhoods. Sarah has a Masters of Science in Planning degree from the University of Toronto.

Helena Grdadolnik  [Associate Director, Workshop Architecture]
Helena has a background in architecture and expertise in planning, urban design, and community engagement. Helena is an Executive Committee member of the Toronto Society of Architects and initiated the Green Line project ( for a hydro corridor in Toronto. Helena was a Senior Architectural Advisor for the English government from 2006-09 and is the co-author of two books: Towards an Ethical Architecture and The Contemporary Canadian Metropolis.

Mike Stern [Founder, MakeWorks]
Mike has been an entrepreneur in Tech and Hospitality, and lived in New York and San Francisco before returning home to Toronto. Most recently, Mike founded MakeWorks, Toronto’s first incubator dedicated to tech startups, makers and creatives. MakeWorks includes a makerspace, electronics & prototyping lab, film studio and event space all under one roof in a restored shoe factory.