A moment of pause in the daily urban life of the Wellington Place Neighbourhood, ‘The Cats’ is a park that stretches across a long narrow plot and creates a key threshold into the area’s revitalized public realm framework.
This elegant mid-block connection links the dynamic King West Village to the north with the graceful Wellington Promenade to the south, enhancing pedestrian movements that integrate into the city’s broader parcours, and where the east end dogs of Berczy Park meet their match at the west end Cats.
An active-passive program of laid-back and stimulating contemplation is deployed under a lush canopy of deciduous trees. Brick walls flank this linear space concealing adjacent parking lots and frame a double row of Black Locust trees in lush beds of understory plants, flowering redbuds and fragrant catnip bouquets. The experience of this intimate oasis is centred around a narrow water axis and a succession of flowing cascades that enhance a fresh microclimate to counter summer heat. Seating in both sun and shade is oriented along this channel to foster urban contemplation, positioned so that visitors can see and be seen.
Guarded at both ends by cast-iron replicas of Dizzy, the neighborhood’s proud feline ambassador, this garden hide-away is also occupied by a cast-figure pride of Dizzy’s mates who watch over the critters in the park. Several built-in urban birdhouses, mouse holes and fish ponds foster a perpetual anticipation for their next 7-course menu.
Diamond Corp., RioCan REIT, Allied Properties REIT
Plaza / Garden