Limberlost Place

A Mass-timber Building with Local and Global Impact

George Brown College’s commitment to the development of Toronto’s East Bayfront community continues with Limberlost Place, a 10-storey mass-timber, net-zero building currently under construction at Queens Quay East and Dockside Drive. Limberlost Place will open in January 2025.

Once complete, Limberlost Place will be the first institutional building of its kind in Ontario. Its construction will contribute to significant revisions of the national and provincial building codes to allow for mass-timber buildings over six storeys.   

A historic donation

We announced the building's name, inspired by the Limberlost Forest and Wildlife Reserve near Huntsville, Ontario when Canadian business leader and philanthropist Jack Cockwell donated $10 million to George Brown College for the Limberlost Place project in 2021. This donation was in addition to his earlier gift of $8 million in 2015. The $18-million gift is one of the largest donations made to the college.

A new era for students, industry & community

Brookfield Sustainability Institute

4 people sitting on the BSI launch panel, May 18, 2023

The Brookfield Sustainability Institute (BSI) will be based at Limberlost Place and is focused on aligning digital transformation and sustainability to benefit communities everywhere. Luigi Ferrara, Dean of George Brown's Centre for Arts, Design, and Information Technology, is the BSI Chair and CEO. 

BSI is a first-of-its-kind, college-based centre of excellence in Ontario to tackle challenges posed by climate change. 

The Brookfield Sustainability Institute partners with government, business and non-profits to develop smart sustainability projects and talent. 

Innovative Student Spaces

Limberlost Place interior learning space

Students will learn in and from this flexible and future-proof facility, equipped with networked and adaptable smart building systems designed to adjust to changing academic uses.

Limberlost Place will be home to the School of Architectural Technology and the School of Computer Technology. A sunlit learning landscape, large shared classrooms and timber bridge connection to the Daphne Cockwell Centre for Health Sciences will be enjoyed by students.

Limberlost Place will also host the college’s third permanent fitness centre and a new indigenous space focused on cultural events and programming.

Mary’s Place Child Care Centre

ECE student with 2 children

George Brown College wishes to thank Dr. Eric and Mrs. Sara Jackman and the Jackman Foundation for their very generous donation of $750,000 in support of Limberlost Place. In recognition of this gift, the child care space, part of the community programming planned for this landmark new building, will be named Mary’s Place in memory of Dr. Jackman’s mother. 

Mary Jackman knew how valuable early childhood education was for her four children. Sending them, at age three, to the newly formed University of Toronto St. George’s School (1926), she realized how children and parents benefited. Wanting other children to have similar experiences, she founded the Bond Street Nursery in the Metropolitan United Church located in the Queen and Church Street neighbourhood. The Bond Street Nursery is believed to be the first early child care agency in Toronto and it existed for over 80 years. 

The Jackman Foundation honours Mary Jackman’s vision with its support of this early childcare centre, Mary’s Place. 

Mary Coyne Rowell Jackman, BA, LL.D, D. Litt.S. 


Sustainable Construction

Limberlost Place is years ahead of Toronto's 2030 goals for sustainable design (Toronto Green Standard) and performance for new developments, and it has become a global model for mass timber sustainable construction. Built with made-in-Canada mass-timber components, the design provides generous spaces focused on well-being by maximizing access to natural light and fresh air. 

The building will harness green energy from the surrounding environment, including Lake Ontario. Two solar chimneys, the engines of the passive ventilation system, will draw air up and through the building from operable windows. The design also features a 40 per cent window-to-wall ratio, and the building will be outfitted with smart daylight sensors and dimming controls.  

  • Limberlost Place will be able to operate passively 50 per cent of the year
  • The building will run with no fuel-fired systems. Electric systems are more energy efficient and represent a cleaner form of energy consumption than natural gas. 
  • A roof-mounted solar array will generate 24 per cent of Limberlost Place's energy consumption to offset GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions generated in the electricity grid.  

Neat fact! Limberlost Place will contribute to significant revisions of the national and provincial building codes to allow for mass-timber buildings over six storeys.   


Limberlost Place, formerly known as The Arbour, has been winning awards and making headlines since we unveiled the project design in 2018.  

Azure Magazine's list of 10 Landmark Projects Shaping Architecture in 2024 (2024)

Architizer A+ Awards, Sustainable Unbuilt Non-Residential Project [Jury Winner] (2023)

Royal Architectural Institute of Canada Awards, Research & Innovation in Architecture Award (2023)

Rethinking the Future, Architecture Construction and Design Award, Institutional, Concept Category (2022)

Waterfront Toronto Design Review Panel Awards, Excellence in Design Innovation (2022)

Architecture Press Release (APR), Global Future Design Award, Education Category – Gold Winner (2022)

World Architecture Festival (WAF), WAFX Award (2022) & Future Projects – Education Category [Shortlisted] (2022)

Association of Consulting Engineering Companies, Ontario Engineering Projects Award (OEPA), Award of Excellence (2021) & Willis Chapman Award – Best in Province (2021)

World Architecture News (WAN) Award, Future – Education Category (2019)

AZ (AZURE) Award, People’s Choice: Unbuilt Projects (2019) & Best in Concepts: Unbuilt Project (2019)

MIPIM/The Architectural Review, AR Future Projects Award, Sustainability Prize (2019)

ReThinking the Future Award, Architecture, Construction and Design Award, Institutional Concept Category (2018) & Certificate of First Award (2018)

Canadian Architect, Award of Excellence (2018)

Design Team

In April 2018, we announced the winner of an international design competition — the team of Moriyama Teshima Architects and Acton Ostry Architects

Toronto-based Moriyama Teshima Architects has received more than 200 awards, including six Governor-General's Medals for architecture. Vancouver-based award-winning firm Acton Ostry Architects designed the Brock Commons Tallwood House, an 18-storey student residence at the University of British Columbia.

Project News, Images & Video

For architectural rendering, images and videos of Limberlost Place please visit our gallery.


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