Upcoming Events

Sep 24 2020 Tours /

HOME TOUR | The Laneway House

12:00 PM

Held live on the TSA Instagram account


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Exterior view

Photo by Steven Evans, Courtesy of Shim-Sutcliffe Architects

After a successful season (virtually) visiting the homes of our members across the GTA, our last home tour of 2020 is finally here!

On Thursday, September 24 at noon, join us on Instagram Live as architect Brigitte Shim, co-founder of Shim-Sutcliffe Architects, gives us a tour of her very own home — an award-winning laneway house which was a pioneer in Toronto predating our current laneway housing by-laws.

During this one-of-a-kind tour, Brigitte will share with us the stories behind her unique laneway home which she designed in collaboration with her partner Howard Sutcliffe, as both an experiment in laneway housing and a home for their family. The tour will end with a moderated Q&A session where Brigitte will answer any questions you might have!

Ready to join us? The tour will be held live on the TSA Instagram account, so make sure to follow us so you don’t miss out on this unique opportunity.


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View of exterior courtyard garden from the interior

Photo by Steven Evans, Courtesy of Shim-Sutcliffe Architects


About the Laneway House

“Living in a laneway enables you to feel like you are live in a village in the heart of an enormous metropolis. Laneways have the potential to create intimate community clusters which operate at a smaller scale within a large, thriving city.”

Brigitte Shim, Interview with Better Dwelling

In 1993, after previously being turned down by the City of Toronto’s Committee of Adjustment, Brigitte Shim and Howard Sutcliffe gained approval from the Ontario Municipal Board for the construction of their laneway house. Located within Toronto’s network of laneways, the project is sited on a lot which combined three small adjoining vacant lots formerly used for storing abandoned cars. The award-winning project, recipient of a Governor General’s Medal for Architecture,  set an example for laneway housing in Toronto showing the potential of this housing type to gently densify the city, provide diversity in housing and create intimate community clusters within the metropolis.

Want to learn more? In 2003, Brigitte Shim and Donald Chong co-edited Site unseen: laneway architecture and urbanism in Toronto, a publication researching the potential of intensification in laneways and their role as vibrant, viable and innovative additions to the public realm of the North American city. The publication received an Award of Excellence in the “Visions and Master Plans” category for the 2003 City of Toronto Architecture and Urban Design Awards.



About the TSA HOME TOURS Series

As we all do our part by staying home, residential design has never been more topical or top of mind. So we thought we’d celebrate these personal spaces by taking our members on a tour of some very special homes — those designed by TSA members for themselves! Each tour will have a new architect feature their home and share with us the stories, challenges and opportunities that shaped their residences.


Missed our last TSA Home Tour? Don’t use Instagram? You can catch all our past home tours on our Home Tours Initiative Page!