Communication, Culture, and Technology Building
University of Toronto at Mississauga
3359 Mississauga Road
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Architect: Saucier + Perrotte
Project team: Alain Desforges, Andrew Butler, Thomas Balaban, Anna Bendix, Nathalie Cloutier, Dominique Dumais, Éric Dupras, Louis-Philippe Frappier, Darrell de Grandmont, Louis-Charles Lasnier, Christine Levine, Jean-François Mathieu, Claudio Nunez, Benjamin Rankin, Pierre-Alexandre Rhéaume, Samantha Schneider
Structural Engineer: Quinn Dressel
Mechanical & Electrical Engineer: RYBKA, Smith and Ginsler
Landscape & Interiors: Saucier + Perrotte
Acoustics: Aercoustics Engineering
Contractor: Ellis Don
The Communication, Culture, and Technology Building is a four-time award winning educational facility that features a multimedia studio theatre and editing suites, interactive computer classrooms and labs, a 500-seat lecture theatre, an auditory research facility, and an e-gallery for electronic art exhibits.
The building’s east elevation features a concrete wall enclosing an open area of green grass, which ends where a folded black metal volume begins. Solid forms then become transparent via four stories of patterned translucent glass.
Saucier + Perrotte takes pride in designing a building suitable for its context. The building envelope is mostly transparent, with the use of many types and colors of glass incorporated into the curtain wall: black, frithed, opalescent, white, clear, “electric green”, translucent, and reflective. By implementing glass with varying opacity onto the west façade, as well as the insertion of a horizontal mirrored strip that sets up an optical play of light and reflection, the separation between exterior and interior becomes indistinguishable, especially at the ground level where the glass is completely transparent.
The slope of the concrete floors shift slightly in plan, following the contours of the land. The interior space is occupied by platforms, bridges, stairs and ramps which flow through the envelope by means of shifting solids. Thus, the interior takes on an agglomerative form. “Continuous, interwoven strands of this topography lift and wind vertically through the structure, connecting spaces between the shifting program elements, which puncture the vertical façade membrane at its upper levels.” (Canadian Architect)
To continue the seamless transition from nature to the building the CCT has a grass covered roof over the underground parking garage, which was built under a former parking lot.
All of the four floors in the building are visible from above. The main form of the circulation path is linear, and all the levels follow the same orientation; the educational spaces are arranged along long straight corridors, following the linear form.
Case study by: Makenzie Kuntz
ARE 320K, Fall 2010
Articles (UT Library):
“Plane Geometry.” Canadian Architect Nov. 2006 v.51, Issue 11: 48-53.
“Governor General’s Medal Winner: Communication, Culture, and Technology Building.” Canadian Architect May 2008 v.53, Issue 5: 38-39.
(All photos by Marc Cramer unless otherwise noted)