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Drew Nelson’s origami creations keep an ancient craft alive in a paperless world

Stephen Sharpe

A compact card unfolds into a three-dimensional paper scene: a polar bear atop an ice drift looking to the murky depths below, surrounded by the brilliant aurora borealis. Drew Nelson’s origami creations, like the man himself, are a harmonious, detailed and delicate reflection of his world and what he wants to contribute to it. Nelson […] More »
July-August 2011

Unearthing Vancouver’s forgotten utopian UN conference, Habitat ’76

Peter Tupper

Walk around Vancouver’s Jericho Beach in 2011 and you’ll see some odd architecture: an empty concrete wharf, a welded steel railing that overlooks English Bay, a strange rail embedded beneath the sailing club. These are all that is left of a complex of five gigantic aircraft hangars that was home to an international conference 35 […] More »

A look at the inner workings of one of Canada's greenest buildings

peter goffin

In 2001, when Earth Rangers was planning for its new facility, the mandate its members gave to the engineers and architects was that they wanted a building with the lowest environmental impact possible, a building on the cutting edge of eco-friendliness. Ten years later, the Earth Rangers Centre is one of the most energy efficient […] More »
May-June 2011

This45: Navneet Alang on blogger-of-the-future Tim Maly

Navneet AlangWebsite

Tim Maly seems like he might be from the future. Since 2007, Maly has, like so many others, written a blog on subjects he cares about. His is called Quiet Babylon, where he writes about technology, architecture and urban spaces. But in 2010, Maly made the brave and unusual decision to quit his regular job, […] More »
July-August 2010

As green-collar jobs boom, Canada is mired in the tar sands

Jessica Leigh JohnstonWebsite

Canada and Abu Dhabi share one big trait: an economy addicted to oil. But while Canada doubles down on the tar sands, the emirate quietly plans a renewable energy hub in a gleaming zero-emissions city in the desert. Can either of these bets pay off? Looking out over the site of Masdar City in Abu […] More »
May-June 2010

Bike share programs may finally be picking up speed in Canada

Lyndsie BourgonWebsite

When Toronto launched Canada’s first bike share program in 2001, many saw it as a miracle project. Mirroring the popular-abroad systems of Paris and Vienna, the system allowed cyclists to grab their bikes at one hub, cruise the streets, and then drop the bike off at a rack nearest their destination—all for a daily or […] More »
July-August 2008

College students learn sustainable design—by building it themselves

Jesse McLean

“No one would think it’s possible to have students with no construction experience making an entire selfsustainable building from scratch,” says David Elfstrom, a graduate of Fleming College in Peterborough, Ontario. But that’s what he and 25 of his classmates in the sustainable building design and construction program did in 2006, erecting an eco-friendly outdoor-living […] More »
March-April 2010

Six visionary designers who are planning for our post-oil future

Alison Garwood-JonesWebsite

A new generation of designers propose products and buildings that are energy efficient and elegant Rick Mercer’s quip during the Copenhagen climate conference last December summed it up best: “So [Stephen] Harper flew to Copenhagen to have a club sandwich and hide in his room?” The post-Copenhagen doldrums were still bringing us down when Thomas […] More »

Coming up in the March-April 2010 issue of This Magazine

Graham F. Scott

The March-April 2010 issue of This Magazine will be landing in subscribers’ mailboxes this week and is now on most newsstands coast to coast. (If you haven’t subscribed yet, this is a great time to do it, locking in a great price before the HST comes along. Just sayin’!) As always, the stories will all […] More »

Friday FTW: Forget your stupid iPad. Radio Canada's the gadget we want

Graham F. Scott

Toronto-based beautiful-tchotchke makers Science + Sons have a proposal for the legions of CBC-only listeners out there: a radio that only tunes into Radio One and Two. The Canadian Design Resource blog seems to have caught this first: Obviously inspired by the CBC’s iconic logo, Radio Canada also pays homage to the national broadcaster’s dedicated […] More »

Friday FTW: "Designing Obama" book evokes nostalgia for simpler time (i.e. 2008)

Graham F. Scott

Above I’ve embedded a video made by Scott Thomas, design director of Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential run, stumping for a book he’s working on called Designing Obama. And in classic Barack-the-vote style, he’s relying on a web-savvy, crowd-sourced, grassroots internet campaign to get it off the ground, requiring readers to collectively pledge the US$65,000 it […] More »