This award recognizes an OALA member and his or her professional work. It singles out specific projects to draw attention to a body of work which demonstrates outstanding
George Dark, OALA
George Dark is an urban designer and landscape architect with more than 30 years of experience. He is a partner at an internationally renowned Toronto firm, Urban Strategies, where since 1987 he has led a variety of important planning projects in cities across North America and in the Caribbean. George is best known locally for his pioneering work on Toronto’s waterfront and in downtown Ottawa. He is a charismatic leader, a compassionate person, and a propelling force in transforming our cities into livable urban centres. George has brought Urban Strategies into the spotlight and is credited by his colleagues for making the firm into the successful, award-winning, and highly esteemed business it is today. His extensive portfolio of work includes the award-winning University of Toronto Open Space Master Plan, the Downtown Hamilton Design Strategy, a Master Plan for the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, the civic vision for Youngstown, Ohio (the first “Shrinking City” in the U.S.), as well as the Public Space Framework for Toronto’s Central Waterfront. George is a Past Chair of the Toronto Parks and Trees Foundation, Chairman of the Board of the Evergreen Foundation, and a Member of the City of Ottawa Design Review Panel. George has been instrumental in bringing about positive changes to myriad communities. From urban intensification challenges in Canada to shrinking towns in the U.S., George has helped to raise the profile of our profession and has single-handedly proven the worth of our work in city planning initiatives. George is perhaps most deserving of this award because he is a landscape architect who works as a planner, which is no doubt a big leap in landscape architecture as a whole. George is a most worthy recipient of the Pinnacle Award.