This week, we focus on projects going on in Toronto, including contributions to the new ‘future city’ planned for the area, and a stunning new university building.


Snøhetta and Heatherwick Studio have joined the huge project in Toronto headed by Sidewalk Labs, to create a new high-tech ‘future city’ on the Eastern waterfront of Toronto. Snøhetta have developed designs for numerous high-rise timber buildings for the site, while Heatherwick Studio have released their visions for the new Canadian Google HQ on the site. Both architecture studios have focused on designing with timber, with lots of green spaces incorporated.

Sidewalk Labs - Toronto
Sidewalk Labs – Toronto

A stunning new building has been designed for the University of Toronto by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, which is to be a “hub for urban and cultural engagement”. The building will be a host to a mish-mash of different things, with lounges, study spaces, meeting rooms, a 200-seat music recital hall and a 400-seat event space with staggering views of the city.

90 Queen's Park - Toronto
90 Queen’s Park – Toronto

The UK age of ownership has risen eight years since 1997, with the average age of ownership at 34 today.


Athens is currently experiencing a property boom, but the high rents and increased demand are pricing out the locals, and they are blaming the presence of companies such as Airbnb.


A grassy multi-purpose arena has been designed by 3XN for city of Munich, Germany. The stadium in the Olympic Park will be home to the city’s basketball and ice hockey teams.

Munich Arena - HEKKTA - Toronto
Munich Arena – HEKKTA – Toronto

Five surprises about the housing market have been revealed this week. Surprisingly, it’s first time buyers that are more likely to buy a home than existing homeowners; however, the most likely living situation for 18-34 year olds is living with their parents; renting to private landlords is now more affordable; people now know the exact place they want to live before even looking, and up to 20% of ‘new’ homes aren’t even new, they are simply conversions.


A mammoth 95,000-square-metre cultural centre has been completed in Shenzhen, China. Created by firm Mecanoo, the odd building was designed to be an “urban connector”, containing an art gallery, science museum, youth centre and bookshop.

The Longgang Cultural Centre - HEKKTA - Toronto
The Longgang Cultural Centre – HEKKTA – Toronto

A key figure in the radical design movement of the 1960s, Italian designer and architect Alessandro Mendini has passed away at the age of 87.


There is an increasing amount of young people turning to vans and containers to live in as rent prices and new homes are increasingly unaffordable.


Purplebricks shares have plummeted up to 40% after the company announced the departure of two senior executives and the slashing of their sales forecast, blaming the tricky UK housing market at the moment.


A Manhattan property investor, MG Capital, is launching an office in London to help it win more UK investors.


Laing O’Rouke have completed a refinancing deal for its UK operations, after all its contracts were put under the microscope by lenders for months.


Plans have been released by United Living for the UK’s biggest modular council housing scheme in Leeds, with the first residents moving in in 2020.


Derby, Rochdale and East Staffordshire have emerged as the most ‘Brexit-proof’ property hotspots, largely unaffected by the economic tension which has come from Brexit.


Spelthorne council has built a £1bn property portfolio, a council which represents a clutch of towns in south-east England with a population of about 100,000, in an attempt to sidestep UK austerity.


The Swedish town of Kiruna is having to relocate east, to prevent it slowly being swallowed by an underground mine. Architects and urban planners involved with the the move have said that the main challenge is not moving the buildings, but moving the ‘minds’ of the citizens.


Most mortgages have been handed out to first-time buyers in the UK, Halifax has revealed.


Photos have been released of BIG’s Amager Bakke waste-to-energy plant in Copenhagen, with a ski slope running down the roof. Click here to see the pictures.

Amager Bakke - HEKKTA - Toronto
Amager Bakke – HEKKTA – Toronto