Evergreen Brick Works | Transforming Toronto

By Nicole Czorny

Like kids at a candy store, the Don Valley Girls explored the Evergreen Brick Works with our rain boots and water bottles in tow.

A truly breathtaking space, Evergreen Brick Works mixes education, nature and fun to inspire and equip visitors with the knowledge to live, work and play more sustainably.

With interactive gardensyoga classes, a farmers and garden market, and new events happening every week, the Brick Works is a showcase for adaptive-reuse, environmental education and green building design.

Before Evergreen transformed the deteriorating buildings of the Don Valley Brick Works in 2008, the collection of 16 heritage factory buildings were a playground for urban explores, graffiti artists and partygoers. During the Great Depression, the site even became an impromptu homeless shelter on cold bitter nights.

Revitalized through a process called “adaptive re-use”, the site now mixes the old with the new, and the contrast in the man-made and natural elements of the Brick Works is breathtaking.

The history of the Brick Works is visible through the graffiti that tells a story of Toronto’s past.

Faces of former Don Valley Brick Works workers and graffiti
cover the walls of the Kiln, where the bricks would dry and cure.

Evidence of the machinery, kilns and bricks used to build Toronto from the ground-up and are incorporated into every aspect and design of the Brick Works, with flowers and vegetable gardens in flower beds made from old bricks.

A model for social enterprise, Evergreen Brick Works is able to succeed by generating revenue through its innovative programs like the Evergreen Gardens native plant nursery.

Through activity fees, parking meters and office, business and event space rentals, Evergreen is able to run innovative programs that are changing the way we look at cities.

The Don Valley Girls highly recommend visiting the Evergreen Brick Works for yourself, as words cannot explain what an amazing and innovative space it really is.


One thought on “Evergreen Brick Works | Transforming Toronto

  1. I just love post-industrial space, from converted lofts, to re-purposed mills.

    Reclamation projects like this give us all hope for our renewable urban ecology…Great job girls…erm, I mean Ladies 😉

    From the recycled “energy” side of things, I’m researching how forestry and agricultural waste is being turned into BioFuel…

    So you should come over to http://EnviroNauts.com for a visit sometime soon!

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