Residences of Spring Hill

 

The Residences of Spring Hill Site


Located at the southwest quadrant of Keele Street and King Road, THE RESIDENCES OF SPRING HILL is envisioned to be a gateway site that is in harmony with the rural character and identity of King Township. Situated at the corner of a future residential road (Burns Blvd.) and overlooking an existing natural feature and naturalized pond, this four storey condominium building will be well integrated within the surrounding landscape and existing lay of the land.

 

Landscaped and amenity spaces within the site have been designed with consideration for promoting attractive and compatible public edges (along the main streets), for promoting a sustainable development through intense planting and diversity of planting and for creating comfortable and welcoming spaces for residents.

 

The master plan describes a series of landscape spaces that wrap around the building and respond to its immediate context while creating an overall experience that addresses the sense of place and arrival, the presence and address along King Road, formal and informal social gathering areas and passive and active recreation.

 

The first impression of the development will be from King Road and Burns Blvd. where a series of low natural stone walls, interspersed with ornamental shrubs and perennials, will combine to create a landscaped landmark in this location. As with all the landscaped design features found throughout the site, the character of the King community has provided the inspiration for the style, material selection and form of the elements.

 

Upon arrival, residents and visitors will be greeted by a formal entrance court comprised of decorative paving beneath a porte cochere, native and ornamental planting flanking the building entrance and a small garden off to the side where garden benches are situated under a pergola and enjoy views to a wall fountain water feature.

 

The formal court, located on the south side of the building, is the main gathering space for the residence. The space is centered on an elliptical lawn that is circumscribed by walkways and seating. The focal element of the space is a traditional, heritage inspired gazebo that also acts as the transition to a butterfly / perennial garden overlooking the valley. An area for a barbecue will be located conveniently to accommodate social gatherings and special events. The indoor pool will have direct access to this space with an area for lounge chairs and patio tables.

 

Overlooking the formal court, a common terrace leading out from the main floor solarium will provide landscaped areas for informal gathering and seating. Access to the formal court from here will be by way of gently winding landscape steps that terminate in a view to the gazebo.

 

Private terraces are provided for many of the units. These will be defined by a combination of decorative fencing and hedging that will ensure some privacy while allowing for views and access to the common walkway system. These spaces will contain a paved patio and areas for gardening.


The King Road buffer is an important feature of this site as it helps to establish the character and identity for this development and to ensure an appropriate visual integration within the existing community. Along this frontage, the design will reference the local character and rural inspired elements. This will include a discontinuous cross-buck fence that is interspersed with hedgerows of either coniferous trees or common lilacs with the intent being to create a co-ordinated soft and predominantly green edge to the site that enhances the strong landscape character of the community. The bold arrangement of fencing and planting swathes are inspired by rural farm hedgerows and laneways. At the detailed design level native and local plant species reminiscent of this type of landscape will be selected.

 

The transition from the formal gardens to the gardens located at the western edge of the site abutting King Road and the natural valley feature, is marked by the less formal layout of the space and the use of more naturalized areas as well as the provision of active recreation amenities such as fitness stations and a community gardening area. These amenities have been arranged along the walking path system and are situated within the landscape to both take advantage of the views overlooking the naturalized pond and valley and to be integrated within naturalized planting areas.

 

A connected walking path within the entire site links all the gardens and spaces described above and serves as an informal trail system along which the various and different landscape spaces are arranged. As another common design element, native and naturalized planting will be used throughout the site wherever possible. Plant species will be selected for their aesthetic value, to enhance biodiversity, to create shade and to define spaces and transitions. Native and rural type plants such as common lilac, dogwoods, viburnums and sumacs will be used as a recurrent or thematic element that unifies the various parts of the site. Other qualities that will be considered in the selection of plant materials are their colour, spring flowering effect, texture of foliage and their ability to provide scent within the garden.

 

In summary, the master plan proposes a comprehensive landscape that captures the look and feel of the King community, while providing an abundance of green space within a traditional garden setting that accommodates a wide range of passive and active uses and supports enhancement of the natural environment. The overarching goal will be to create a welcoming, comfortable and compelling landscape experience for residents and visitors that will be a pleasure for all the senses.