June 20-22, 2019

Architecture for Planners

A short course offered to the City of Ottawa Department of Planning, Infrastructure, and Economic Development, by the Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism at Carleton University.

Participants will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the course for their continuing education hours.


Course Outline


(City Hall, Colonel By Room)




Lecture 1:

A (very!) Short History of Architecture (Peter Coffman)

This lecture by an architectural historian will cover various stories about the beginning of architecture, the major Western periods, and some of the debates around issues of style, meaning, and permanence. The lecture will have a particular focus on styles and periods of Ottawa and the region.




Lecture 2:

Anatomy of a Building (Benjamin Gianni)

What are the parts of a building, and how do the various systems fit together? Commonly used architectural terms like skin, structure, systems, circulation, core, etc. will be put in context. The lecture will include both photographs and architectural graphics, making a connection between the drawing language used by architects, and the constructed elements that result from those drawings.


Short Exercise




Lecture 3:

Building Typologies (Benjamin Gianni)

How do various types of buildings differ, in terms of design strategies, rules of thumb, public presence, etc.

Typologies discussed will include housing, office buildings, civic buildings, sacred buildings, and service buildings. Each of these will be discussed in terms of internal organization, typical ‘languages’ of façade, and infrastructural requirements.




Lecture 4:

Design Principles and Interior Planning (Jerry Hacker)

What are some of the key principles of building design, particularly with respect to the plan? Concepts will include ‘parti’, hierarchy, adjacency, proportion, and spatial sequence.

These principles will be tested during the design charrette on Saturday.


Short Exercise




FRIDAY 21 June

(City Hall, Colonel By Room)




Lecture 5:

Modernism and its Aftermath (Jill Stoner)

How did the modern movement in architecture begin, what was its philosophy, what did produce, what followed, and what are the positive and negative aspects of its legacy in contemporary practice? The legacy of modernism directly affects how we think about contemporary architecture. This lecture will address some of the misconceptions and oversimplifications attached to contemporary conversations about modernism.




Lecture 6:

Case Study: One Type, Two Buildings (Jill Stoner and Mitchell Hall)

This lecture, in two parts, will look at two buildings of the same type: the art museum. The first will be the iconic Kimball Art Museum designed by Louis Kahn; the second will be the Ottawa Art Gallery, designed by KPMB. The two buildings will be discussed in terms of similarities and differences, relative to context, use, and tectonic expression.


Lunch and Visit to Ottawa Art Gallery with Mitchell Hall


Lecture 7:

Building Economics (David Renfroe)

What are some of the basic rules of design and construction cost?  How do architects work within cost constraints, and what are some of the variables in building construction that can ‘break the budget?” This lecture will be structured around an introduction to basic principles, followed by two case studies. 




Lecture 8:

The Design Process (Sheryl Boyle)

What are the phases of the design process, how much time is spent on each one, how do each of the phases contribute to the quality of a building? This lecture will address generating a design concept, the process of diagramming, massing models, iterations, material selections, wall assemblies, and development of details. As a direct summary of the process of architectural design, the lecture will use interactive media to illustrate how sketch, overlay, redlining and notation operate as elements of design thinking and design development.



(Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism)



10:00 – 3:00

Design Charrette (lunch will be set up informally at noon)

Instructor Team:  Ben Gianni, Zachary Colbert, Jerry Hacker, Jill Stoner

The design charrette will draw upon material from Lecture 4 and Lecture 8, introducing planners to the process of translating a written building program into a design proposal. Exercises will include:

  • Understanding hierarchy
  • Diagramming spaces
  • Modeling mass
  • Envisioning structure and ‘parti’
  • Redline and Revision
  • Pin-up and peer review


Design Crit and Summary



Instructors Bios

Sheryl Boyle

Associate Professor, Azrieli School of Architecture & Urbanism

Architecture is a construction of time, culture and materiality. Current research is in the non-visual senses in architecture and related material culture and its manifestation in the late medieval period as well as contemporary pre-fabricated building systems. Recent funding from industry and the Canadian Foundation for Innovation for a full-scale solar thermal research house in collaboration with Professors Ian Beausoleil-Morrison and Cynthia Cruickshank from mechanical engineering is nearing completion at the corner of Bronson and Sunnyside on Carleton campus. Professor Boyle teaches the comprehensive design studio in the Master of Architecture program, with a focus on the design process from site analysis through building details.

Peter Coffman

Associate Professor, Department of Art History and History & Theory of Architecture

Peter Coffman is the Supervisor of Carleton University’s History and Theory of Architecture program, and Past President of the Society for the Study of Architecture in Canada. His research and publication have focused on Canadian Gothic Revival and English Romanesque architecture. An overarching theme in his work is the exploration of the many cultural and political meanings that have been attached to the Gothic style from the twelfth century to the present day. He is also Past President of the Society for the Study of Architecture in Canada, a scholarly society devoted to the study of all aspects of the built environment in Canada.

With a diverse background and eclectic interests, Peter was a photographer in a previous (professional) life. His most recent solo exhibitions were Anglicana Tales, an exhibition of architectural photography at the Dalhousie Art Gallery (2010), and Camino, at ViewPoint Gallery in Halifax (2009). His photographs have illustrated two books: Exploring the Capital (by Andrew Waldron, Figure.1 Publishing), and Camino (by Peter Coffman, Wintergreen Studios Press).

Benjamin Gianni

Associate Professor, Azrieli School of Architecture & Urbanism

Benjamin Gianni is an associate professor at Carleton University’s Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism and is the current coordinator of the Urbanism major. His research interests focus on the areas of housing and urban development. Of particular interest is public housing constructed in the decades following WWII in Europe and North America, and its redevelopment from the 1990s onward. His research also includes urbanization, suburbanization and a study of large-scale housing ensembles in contemporary China, questioning the legacy of modernism and its transposition to different cultural and temporal contexts. He teaches courses on housing and urban history, as well as leads the housing studio in the fourth year of the BAS program. He was a former Director of both the School of Architecture and the School of Information Technology at Carleton.

Jerry Hacker

Associate, Marc Boutin Architects

A Registered Architect, Jerry began his architectural training at the University of Manitoba. After studying for a semester at the Escola Superior d’Aquitectura de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain, he went on to complete his master of architecture degree which focused on re-interpreting the importance inhabitants can have in creating cultural artefacts by situating their engagement and transformation of space over time as the central role of architects and architecture. This effort was recognized with a nomination to the Canadian Architect Awards of Excellence program and the Canada Council for the Arts Prix de Rome for Emerging Practitioners program. Following his studies Jerry joined The Marc Boutin Architectural Collaborative Inc. (MBAC) where he practiced as a senior associate and design leader for over 13 years. During his collaboration with MBAC the office was recognized with over 30 national and international peer reviewed awards for design excellence.

Mitchell Hall

Principal KPMP Architects, OAA, FRAIC

Mitchell Hall has been part of KPMB Architects since 1989, and has demonstrated a commitment to inventive and innovative use of materials and construction methods, and the ability to turn great design ideas into great buildings through rigorous examinations of all aspects of construction systems and details. His projects include the Jackson-Triggs Niagara Estate Winery, the McGill University and Genome Quebec Innovation Centre, Canada’s National Ballet School, the Mike & Ophelia Lazaridis Quantum-Nano Centre at the University of Waterloo, Bridgepoint Active Healthcare, and the Health Sciences Waterfront Campus for Toronto’s George Brown College. His latest projects include the new Science and Academic Building at the University of Lethbridge and Canada’s Diversity Gardens at Assiniboine Park in Winnipeg. Mitchell has lectured on KPMB’s work in Canada and the United States, has been a guest critic and juror, and is a member of the Design Colloquium Advisory Board and the City of Mississauga Design Review Committee.

David Renfroe

Principle, Renfroe Land Development

David Renfroe is the president of Renfroe Land Management. Prior to this role, he was the Director of Business Development and Planning for Domicile Developments, Inc. for five years. He is Chairman of the Builder Developer Council of the Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association, member of the City of Ottawa’s Planning Advisory Committee and a member of the Canadian Homebuilders’ Association’s Urban Council. Renfroe has been recognized with many awards including Outstanding Accomplishment from the Canadian Home Builders’ Association, the Fred Nielsen Award Company of the Year by the Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association and a Colonel Boss Member of the Year Award by Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Architecture and Business (Honors) from New York Institute of Technology and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from University of Phoenix. 

Jill Stoner

Professor and Director, Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism

Jill Stoner is the Director of the Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism, following 28 years as professor in the Department of Architecture at the University of California, Berkeley. Her professional practice (1993 – 2007) comprised adaptive reuse, additions and renovations to public buildings, and visionary urban competitions, several of which received national and international awards. Her first book, Poems for Architects (William Stout Publishers 2001) is an anthology of 48 poems that reveal the spatial sensibility of the twentieth century. A second book, Toward a Minor Architecture (MIT Press 2012), advocates for a more politicized approach to post-recession, contested and neo-urban landscapes.

Further Inquiries

For inquiries about this course or any other Azrieli Continuing Education Programs, please complete the inquiry form below.

Azrieli Continuing Education Inquiry Form

  • Type in your question or comments below and a member of our team will get in touch with you shortly.