Will Alsop designs two colourful metro stations for Toronto's expanded subway | Dezeen

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Toronto stations by Will Alsop

Will Alsop designs two colourful metro stations for Toronto's expanded subway

British architect Will Alsop has created metro stations in Toronto's Pioneer Village and Finch West neighbourhoods, as part of an initiative to create more public transit options in the wider metropolitan area.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

The two stations form part of the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension Project, which extends Toronto's subway system through to York, a suburban district of the city. Both stations are located on the outskirts of the city.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

Built on otherwise underdeveloped lots,"Built on otherwise underdeveloped lots, the structures were designed by The Spadina Group Associates (TSGA), a joint venture between IBI Group, LEA Consulting Ltd and WSP, in collaboration with Alsop and his firm All Design.

Both are distinguished by their cantilevered roofs, polished concrete interior walls, and pops of colour throughout.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

Black and white stripes cover the exterior of Finch West, with a large red window on the second storey of its entrance. Pioneer Village contrasts with its rust-toned palette and is clad in weathered steel, with an enormous geometric canopy roof on one portion.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

"The subway station entrances were designed as a pair of sculptural structures; their height exceeding that necessary, to increase their visibility," said a statement from Alsop.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

At Finch West, the two-storey building is surrounded by geometric concrete pillars, representative of art deco designs. Exterior black-and-white stripes are replicated inside on the ceiling and along floors down inside the metro platform.

Orange, fuchsia and lime-green windows define the ground-floor entrance. Pops of blue, green and red feature alongside the polished concrete metro platforms.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

Pioneer Village, in contrast, is covered in weathering steel. A huge cantilevered roof creates a covered space for two regional bus terminals, and is topped with planted with meadow grasses. The station is located on the border of York, and anchors a corner lot of York University.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

Inside are polished concrete walls, similar to those Finch West, with angled supporting columns down in the platforms. A suspended array of 40 light designs by Berlin studio Realities:united run along the ceiling, and display text-based messages sent from passengers.

Toronto stations by Will Alsop

Alsop's equally bold Ontario College of Art and Design is located closer to Downtown Toronto, and received the first RIBA Worldwide Award in 2004.

His colourful Peckham Library in London also won the RIBA Stirling Prize in 2000.

Photography is by Wade Zimmerman.

Project credits:

Civil/structural engineering: LEA Consulting
Structural engineering: WSP (Halsall Associates)
Mechanical engineering: HH Angus & Associates
Landscape design: Janet Rosenberg & Studio

More images and plans

Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Finch West site plan
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Site plan
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Finch West diagram
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Finch West section plan
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Diagrams
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Pioneer Village roof design
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop
Toronto stations by Will Alsop