This city-wide planning study explored how Toronto can better accommodate families raising children in high rise apartment and condo towers. Jane devised and led an ‘ethnographic’ research approach that involved in-depth interviews and walk throughs with families in their living spaces and neighbourhood.  We asked people what was and wasn’t working at the unit, building and neighbourhood scale, in addition to documenting the fascinating and inventive ‘hacks’ they had made to address specific challenges in their condos and communities like a lack of storage, children’s play space and walkability.  This participatory consultation approach offered numerous insights and a key lesson – instead of “hacking” their homes, many families have “hacked” their thinking about what they need to successfully raise their children in the city. In subsequent phases of the study consultation activities included public workshops, online surveys and pop-up events in major growth centres of Etobicoke, North York, Scarborough and the downtown core.

Client: City of Toronto/Urban Strategies 2016-2017

Role: Public facilitation lead, process design, survey development, interviewing and reporting

Project website here