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December 30, 2006 | Christopher Hume | Toronto Star
"Year brought critical mass of first-class projects to city accustomed to the second rate." Architecture critic Christopher Hume reviews Toronto's top ten projects in 2006, four of which were designed by KPMB: Canada's National Ballet School (with Goldsmith Borgal & Company), the Young Centre for Performing Arts, the Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art and 180 Queen Street West.
Hume writes on KPMB: "After 2006, there can be no doubt that Toronto's Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg has established itself as the best...KPMB did something only the bravest and most mature architects are capable of: they designed architecture that serves the city....KPMB has found that elusive balance between self-assurance and self-restraint, ego and sublimation, that makes them such a great asset to this city."
Specific comments on each KPMB project are as follows:
NBS: "Simply superb and supremely urban, this is the kind of quiet but transformative architecture that brings new life to a city."
Gardiner Museum: "The jewel of the so-called Cultural Renaissance, this exquisite remake turned an apologetic '80s building into an architectural masterpiece."
Young Centre for the Performing Arts: "Located in the Distillery District, this is adaptive reuse at its most inventive and brilliant. Designed for maximum flexibility, it manages to be comfortable and exciting at the same time."
180 Queen Street West: "The 21st century office tower carefully crafted to reflect the city's diversity. Looking east, it addresses the formality of the civic precinct, south and west it participates in the messy vitality of Queen West."