An urban design proposal for the CP rail yards in North Bay, Ontario

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Koziak Roberts, Carolle Janine
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The railway companies have played a formative role in building our nation. Many towns and cities across Canada grew up around a railway station. Many tracks and railway lands are located along the shores of lakes or at the junction of rivers thus forming a barrier between the community and its waterfront. Now, as the transportation industry changes, many railway stations and maintenance yards have become obsolete and we are faced with the opportunity to rethink how these lands and buildings can be reurbanized. This practicum looks at reurbanizing the CP Rail lands on the waterfront of North Bay, Ontario. The railway lands and other available industrial lands now occupy about 70 acres of property between North Bay's downtown core and Lake Nipissing's waterfront. The railway station is no longer used for passenger travel since the VIA route was discontinued through North Bay. The intend is to develop an urban design plan for the the railway lands that would best serve the citizens of North Bay in the future. The urban design study has two goals. The f rst is to look at creating an urban focus or the downtown area and a strong link between Main Street and the waterfront. The second goal is to propose a pattern of urbanization that is based on more viable and sustainable urban design practices that could become the building block of a more environmentally benign city. The New Urbanism was chosen as a model for the urban design for its compact use of land, diversity, pedestrian scale and public identity. With its use of traditional town planning principles, the New Urbanism model will blend in well with the existing urban patterns and scale of the downtown context.