Evolutionary Housing Strategies for Canadian Cities

This project examines the feasibility of low-cost evolutionary housing strategies to accommodate changing uses in Canada. It is a partnership between the University of Waterloo school of Architecture and architect John van Nostrand who has developed numerous prototypes for evolutionary housing in Canada and internationally. The research will begin with an analysis of existing prototypes in order to develop best practices. It will then test the feasibility of two types of evolutionary housing on sites in Toronto: the first, from the ground up, which starts low rise and builds up, the second, above ground, which starts with an existing building or structural frame and builds within. Both types will be tested through both a financial proforma and a life-cycle analysis to determine their environmental performance.

Faculty Supervisor:

Adrian Blackwell


Maria Luiza Ottoni


SvN Architects and Planners


Architecture and design




University of Waterloo



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