Joseph Bannon Park

Toronto, ON

Joseph Bannon Park is a multipurpose, active recreation park with a high energy splash pad, junior and senior playgrounds, sports fields, and ice skating - to the Kiosk and maintenance facilities and pathway network, it is an all-season park encompassing both active and passive spaces for all ages and abilities. The theme for the park is physical engagement. Pleasure skating is the main attraction in winter and is available on the refrigerated circular skating rink, complete with two-level lighting and a fully serviced kiosk for skate sharpening, refreshments, and washrooms. In the warmer months, activities include roller-blading on the rink base, shaded sitting areas grouped for social interaction, outdoor movies, walking paths through the park, and Junior and Senior Play. The play structures are Handicap Accessible and provide opportunities to develop physical and social skills. Swing sets and play equipment are grouped to allow preschoolers to participate independently and safely. The main summer attraction is the splash pad which is totally automated and interactive. The spray equipment sequencing varies with each user’s defined activation. Of particular importance to the City and the neighbourhood was connectivity and regard for the community at large. Our design has accommodated a wide variety of users from both local neighbourhoods and the outlying community. Aesthetically, STUDIO tla was sympathetic to the need for the park programme to be clearly organized along a central organizing principle. We designed a crescent shaped major pathway which provides access across the site and from which all activities can be approached. Working alongside the heritage committee, the area’s history was visualized through statuary and plaques.

The park was named after war hero Joseph Bannon, who landed at Juno beach on D-Day. STUDIO tla worked with a local artist to create a sculpture to commemorate the park’s namesake. So as not to be a stand alone object, a second sculpture was commissioned that cheerfully depicts children at a park bench.

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