November 25, 2016

Symposium: 8am – 5:30pm
After party: 8pm – late
District 28, Toronto

re:Public is a one-day symposium bringing together the top players, projects and ideas in public space.

From apps and landmarks to controversial initiatives, the event will challenge, spark debate and inspire radical change in the way our cities are shaped. After the symposium, our much-anticipated afterparty NXT City Night kicks off.




Gil Penelosa
Founder & Chair of the Board
8-80 Cities

Jennifer Keesmaat, Chief Planner for the City of Toronto

Jennifer Keesmaat
Chief Planner
City of Toronto


Adam Vaughan
Member of Parliament
Spadina-Fort York


Sheldon McCormick
General Manager - Ontario

Jay Pitter
Author, Subdivided
Director, Stakeholder Engagement
Inspirit Foundation

Tomos Lewis
Toronto Bureau Chief

Sevaun Palvetzian

Ryan Falconer, Transport Consulting Leader, Arup

Ryan Falconer
Transport Consulting Leader

Marc Ryan
Principal and Co-Founder
Public Work

Alex Josephson

Ilana Altman
Executive Director
Toronto Pavilion Project/Artful City

Harold Madi
Senior Principal & Urban
Places Canada Lead

Robert Barnard
Youthful Cities
Anjuli Solanki
Director of Community Programs
STEPS Initiative
Ashleigh Berger
General Manager - Toronto
Jonathan Cha
Ville en mouvement/UQAM
Luke Anderson
Michelle Senayah
The Laneway Project

Lachlan MacQuarrie
Vice President
Oxford Properties

Boris Issaev
Co-Founder & Project Manager

Alex Mather

Trevor Duwyn
Ranger App

Program Agenda
Studio One
Reception Bar
Studio One
Reception Bar
08:00 - 08:50
Morning Breakfast and Registration

Espresso bar from NEO Coffee Bar, together with tea and pastries.

09:00 - 09:10
Opening Remarks from the Directors of NXT City
Christine Caruso
Director and Co-Founder, NXT City
Mackenzie Keast
Director and Co-Founder, NXT City
Justin Leclair
Director and Co-Founder, NXT City
09:10 - 09:30
Keynote 1: Tomos Lewis – Keeping an Eye on the World

Monocle’s Toronto bureau chief brings a global perspective about the impact of public space on quality of life.

Introduction by William Bryck, President and CEO of Build Toronto.

Tomos Lewis
Toronto Bureau Chief, Monocle Magazine
William Bryck
President and CEO, Build Toronto
09:30 - 10:10
Panel 1: Happening Places for All

How do communities create accessible, enjoyable places out of underused urban spaces?

Moderated by Tomos Lewis, Monocle’s Toronto Bureau Chief

Alex Mather
Co-founder, #SitTO
Jonathan Cha
Co-Founder, Ville en mouvement and Lecturer, UQAM Montreal
Anjuli Solanki
Project Manager, STEPS Initiative and Executive Director, Riverside BIA
Luke Anderson
Co-Founder, StopGap Foundation
Michelle Senayah
Co-Founder and Director, The Laneway Project
10:15 - 10:35
Robert Barnard – Creating Youthful Urban Spaces
Learn how data can be used to design and program public spaces to address the needs of young people.
Robert Barnard
Co-Founder, Youthful Cities
10:35 - 10:50
Morning Coffee Break
10:50 - 11:10
Keynote 2: Sevaun Palvetzian – Public Spaces: Global Need; Local Opportunity
Sevaun tackles the issue of leadership and engagement for the next generation of city builders.
Sevaun Palvetzian
CEO, CivicAction
11:15 - 11:35
Keynote 3: Jennifer Keesmaat – Perspectives from the Chief Planner
From Rail Deck Park to the Bentway, what’s in store for the future of Toronto’s public spaces?
Jennifer Keesmaat
Chief Planner for the City of Toronto
11:40 - 12:00
Keynote 4: Jay Pitter – Beyond Tolerance: Strategies for Fostering Public Space Entitlement

What are the challenges to achieving inclusivity in city building, particularly in hyper-diverse cities like Toronto?

Jay Pitter
Author of 'Subdivided' and Director of Stakeholder Engagement, Inspirit Foundation
12:00 - 13:00
Lunch Break

On-site cafe offers a variety of lunch options for all diets. In addition, local neighbourhood restaurants and cafe’s are a short walk away – nearby options can be found here.

13:05 - 13:25
SPECIAL PRESENTATION: Arup – Reconciling Technology and Place Making in Cities

Arup’s Dr. Ryan Falconer and Justin Trevan lead a special interactive session on how new technologies will come to shape the public realm in our cities.

Dr. Ryan Falconer
Transport Consulting Leader, ARUP
13:30 - 14:00
Panel 2: The Public Realm in the Digital-Automated Age: Are We Lost Without Tech?

From VR to AR, we explore the potential for technology to revolutionize how we use and interact with public spaces.

Moderated by Matthew Slutsky, Founder and President of Buzzbuzzhome

Ashleigh Berger
General Manager, Breather (Toronto & Montreal)
Trevor Duwyn
Co-Founder, Ranger
Boris Issaev
Co-Founder, Parkbus
Matthew Slutsky
Founder and President, Buzzbuzzhome
14:05 - 14:25
Keynote 5: Sheldon McCormick – Uber and Public Transit: The Future of Urban Mobility in Canada

How can sharing technologies help unlock different facets of our cities?

Sheldon McCormick
General Manager, Uber (Ontario)
14:30 - 15:15
David and Goliath: A Town Hall Session on Tactical + Large Scale Urbanism

This rapid-fire session considers the contrasts of temporal and large scale public space interventions and the long-term effect on our cities.

Moderated by Salima Rawji, Director of Development for Build Toronto.

Alex Josephson
Harold Madi
Senior Principal and Urban Places Canada Lead, Stantec
Ilana Altman
Executive Director, Toronto Pavilion Project and Founder, The Artful City
Marc Ryan
Principal and Co-Founder, PUBLIC WORK
Salima Rawji
Director of Development, Build Toronto
15:15 - 15:40
Afternoon Coffee Break
15:40 - 15:50
Remarks from Lachlan MacQuarrie

Perspectives on the NXT City Prize and the role of private companies in improving our public spaces.

Lachlan Macquarrie
Vice President, Oxford Properties
15:50 - 16:15
Keynote 6: MP Adam Vaughan – Federal Urbanism
What is the role of government in shaping – and funding – the public realm and shared spaces in our cities?
Adam Vaughan
Member of Parliament for Trinity-Spadina
16:20 - 17:05
Keynote 7: Gil Penalosa – Toronto: Big Challenges, Bigger Opportunities

This global roundup showcases the future of public spaces and why Toronto stands to become a global leader in visionary public spaces.

Gil Penelosa
Founder and Chair of the Board, 8-80 Cities
17:05 - 17:15
Closing Remarks

Closing remarks by the Directors of NXT City.

Christine Caruso
Director and Co-Founder, NXT City
Mackenzie Keast
Director and Co-Founder, NXT City
Justin Leclair
Director and Co-Founder, NXT City
20:00 - 02:00
re:Public After Party – NXT City Night

Join us as we celebrate great public spaces and party until the wee hours of the morning with our open bar, snacks from local chefs, artist installations, and DJs.

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You know those parties people talk about for months?

We threw one of those. The official re:Public After Party and Awards Ceremony

  • Open bar featuring beer from Steam Whistle Brewing, wine from Fielding Estate Winery, and cocktails from Tequila Tromba
  • Food samplings from some of Toronto’s top restaurants including Pai Northern Thai Kitchen, Oyster Boy, and KanPai
  • Artist installations including the interactive exhibits from Mason Studio and Arup
  • Music all night from local DJs in two separate party rooms

See photos from the party!




re:Public also featured the awards ceremony to announce the winners of the 2016 NXT City Prize, presented by Oxford Properties. Congratulations to Lucas DeClavasio and Andrew Patterson for their ‘Toronto Streetcar Safety Murals’