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SHIFT 2019 Infrastructure/Architecture Challenge: Immigrant Landscapes

16 Apr 2019
Image Credit: Sophie Mackey
Architectural Credit: Sophie Mackey

Immigrant Landscapes
Sophie Mackey | Student | McEwen School of Architecture

Cities are being transformed both architecturally and culturally by migration. This transformation brings to the surface policies that can promote racist attitudes, discrimination and assimilation within the host city. Architecturally, inequality is often embedded into the landscape of cities. Esthetically, the built environment does not often portray diverse cultures or provide appropriate spaces suitable for the needs of diverse users. 

The architecture of modern cities remains unchallenged, despite changing multicultural makeup. This brings to light the need to provide cities with inclusive designs that can welcome. Currently, we tend to think about inclusive design through the lens of accessibility and women in design. What if, instead of favouring spatial homogenization and cultural assimilation, we start from the premise of cultural diversity in architecture as crucial to humanity? 

Northern Ontario municipalities, like Sudbury, are struggling to maintain their population, turning to migration as a solution. Despite a well-intentioned vision, Sudbury is far from ready to adequately accommodate newcomers. This SHIFT submission proposes an immigration support centre that functions as a central hub in the city. Architecture becomes an agent, carrying a positive communal vision for inclusivity, thus addressing architectural and socio-cultural issues in Sudbury, and rebuilding an inclusive immigrant landscape for tomorrow.


Learn more about this project at the SHIFT 2019 Infrastructure/Architecture Challenge Presentation 
(May 24, 2019, 6:30 PM), at the 2019 OAA Annual Conference, which takes place in Quebec City. 

For more information on the SHIFT Challenge, please visit:

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