A streetcar car wash, the Pan Am pool and five more unmissable new locations at Doors Open
During Doors Open, more than 130 buildings across the city open up for a weekend of exploration. Luckily, for those of us who have already toured the R.C. Harris Water Treatment Plant umpteen times, this year’s line-up features 40 new locations. Here, the best of the bunch.
For sports nuts
Pan Am Sports Centre
The centrepiece of Toronto’s Pan Am effort was this mammoth sportsplex, which is about the size of five football fields. Visitors can tour the two Olympic-size pools, diving tank, recreational track, climbing wall, four gyms and a two-floor fitness centre. Open Saturday. 875 Morningside Dr.
For transit junkies
Tours of the streetcar maintenance facility at the corner of Lake Shore and Leslie will offer a glimpse of how the TTC keeps its cars clean and (mostly) functional. A charity barbecue is on the weekend’s agenda, but the hands-down highlight is the chance to sit in a streetcar while it goes through a giant car wash. Open Saturday. 1165 Lake Shore Blvd. E.
For wannabe pilots
Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport
Canada’s ninth busiest airport is all but personally inviting you to finally try out the pedestrian walkway 100 feet below the surface of Lake Ontario. Once you’ve crossed it, take a tour of the inner workings of the airport, including restricted viewing galleries, fire halls and maintenance facilities. Open Saturday. 2 Eireann Quay.
For real-estate dreamers
House 4 is a slick new offering from MODERNest, the urban architects renowned for their unique take on rustic modernism. Only the basement and ground floor are open to the public, but even a quick stroll through the bright, clean space should be more than enough to provide inspiration for your own summer reno. Open Sunday. 287 Brunswick Ave.
For architecture geeks
Bergeron Centre for Engineering Excellence
This months-old York University masterpiece is one of the youngest buildings on the Doors Open line-up, nicknamed “The Cloud” because of the way its glass facade reflects light across the campus: the 8,000 triangular panels are arranged in an intricate pattern that never repeats. Guided tours will show off collaborative student spaces, engineering labs and the green roof. Open Saturday and Sunday. 11 Arboretum Ln.
For tech whizzes
The Printing House 3D
These 3D-printing pros will offer a look inside their studio, printers and software. Visitors can fiddle with 3D-printed prototypes and samples, see the process in action, and learn how new ideas are rendered into digital models and tangible objects. Open Saturday and Sunday. 66 Wellington St. W., unit E004.
For urban-planning nerds
Markham House: City Building Lab
The building’s quaint white façade belies a thriving hub of civic geekdom, home to installations, workshops and a photography exhibition about the rapidly growing Mirvish Village. Tours will explore the artistic neighbourhood’s ongoing relationship with the city—and, presumably, unite a whole bunch of #topoli devotees. Open Saturday and Sunday. 610 Markham St.