Request for Participation: 40 Oaks

Written by:

We are still looking for a lot of awesome items for PDA for 40 Oaks! Participate today to be part of this awesome project!


Public Displays of Affection (PDA) is currently working with the Toronto Christian Resource Centre (CRC) on what will become a community hub in the heart of the Regent Park revitalization in Toronto. This package will describe the important 40 Oaks project and our approach, which will use and inform upon the value of design. We are asking you to review our proposal with the hope that you may be interested in contributing.

Submissions Deadline: On-going, please email Katherine if you would like to participate.

Click here to download the updated inventory here! – Updated Sept 14, 2011

Why Participate?

➊ Socially Sustainable: Through effective and engaging design, 40 Oaks will provide an un- institutional setting to empower people to make a difference in their own lives.
➋ Environmentally Sustainable: The project is local, the designers are local, the materials are local, and the people we need to care about are local.
➌ Economically Sustainable: Your creative contributions will help 40 Oaks to afford and provide a designed and considered space for its residents and the community.
➍ Educational: Your participation will challenge the notions of institutional design and inform on the value of design beyond the perceived superficial.
➎ Recognition: Your work will be showcased in situ during Toronto design week 2012, in an official event of Toronto Design Offsite (

About CRC

The Toronto Christian Resource Centre has been operating since 1965. Its mission is to “help people to help themselves” and for over 40 years the CRC has provided a unique self-help model of hope and caring where people of all means work together to build lives and a cohesive and inclusive community. The CRCs core values are that everyone who comes into contact with the Centre should feel Welcomed, Valued and Respected.
To learn more about CRC, visit

About 40 OakS

In its almost 50 years, the CRC has moved five times. Finally, with a place to call home, it will provide 87 units of affordable housing, a drop in centre, meal services, workshops, multi-faith worship spaces, and a hub where the CRC and other social agencies will serve the community.

With the goal to become Regent Park’s “Community Living Room”, 40 Oaks will be “a place where people of all means and backgrounds will come together to enhance, enrich, and build their lives and create a true community.”

To learn more about 40 Oaks, visit


We are a group of dedicated community members who use design as a tool to shape, build and improve society. We do this because we want to be active members of our community, we see the opportunity for positive change in our community and most of all because we love our community! We include designers, architects, students, community members, volunteers, project managers, creative thinkers and makers.


Through partnership with the CRC and by engaging members, we intend to furnish the “Community Living Room” at 40 Oaks, in three ways:
➊ WEEKLY COMMUNITY WORKSHOPS: through engaging the Regent Park community and residents, discarded furniture will be refurbished, and found and salvaged materials will be repurposed. These workshops will attract community interest in the project and give residents a part in designing and building their new home.

➋ PROFESSIONAL RECRUITMENT: we will enlist YOU volunteer designers, craftspeople, and artists within the larger community to design and build and then donate pieces of furniture.

➌ STUDENT PARTICIPATION: we will integrate this project into courses at various post-secondary institutions where students will have the opportunity to design and build furniture, engage in the community workshops and participate in exhibition and fundraising events.


To raise awareness and support for the 40 Oaks project and to express our gratitude for your participation, an exhibition will be
inspiring art and design.
To learn more about TO Design Offsite, visit

Repurposed, reused, refurbished, reclaimed, reworked, remastered.  Producing as much as possible through the reuse of objects and materials that would otherwise be discarded will help CRC save on cost and are also relevant in our concept and the concept of 40 Oaks.
Ideal material use includes: 80% reclaimed materials and 20% new materials. Finishes, strippers, and bonding agents should be safe and healthy where possible.


If you are interested in participating, please let us know! We will then schedule a meeting to discuss options, expand on project details, and provide you with the Designer Guidelines package. Click here to download the Designer Guidelines package. We are asking each participant to provide a concept sketch 3 weeks after confirmation of participation.

You should also have an idea of which items within our inventory you would like to work on. Click here to download the Inventory here.


Some dates are tentative and are subject to change.
SEPT 7 – All Participants Meeting
SEPT 12 – Final Design Approval, submit bio
DEC 1 – Installation (TBC)
JAN 26 – Public Opening, PDA for 40 Oaks exhibition
JAN 27  –  PDA for 40 Oaks Opening Reception

To respond please contact Katherine Ngui at:

Leave a Reply