The City of Stratford held a design competition and selected GSP Group to prepare plans to revitalize Stratford Market Square as the premier downtown space. The study consolidated over a decade of visioning exercises to address current and future civic needs and the character of the City’s rich heritage. This character includes City Hall which is a national historic site adjacent to the square.
The preferred design was guided by extensive consultation involving downtown merchants, the public and user groups. The open central space can be adapted to host a range of events, including arts and culture programs in a City that hosts a world-renowned annual Shakespeare Festival and weekly farmers’ market. Parking spaces can be transformed into an extension of the square as needed.
A river-like paving pattern emulates the nearby Avon River. The space is framed by shade trees and includes custom outdoor furniture and ground-embedded water jets to provide visual interest and interaction in the summer. Additional pedestrian crossings and curb extensions improve pedestrian safety, while site grading supports accessibility and safety design objectives for the space.
Construction was completed in time for the City’s celebration of Canada’s Sesquicentennial in 2017.
Aerial photo: GoneFlying.
Other Public Spaces
Carl Zehr Square Redesign, Kitchener
Queen Street Placemaking, Kitchener
Waterloo Public Square
Victoria Park Entrance, Kitchener
McLennan Park, Kitchener