It is with a heavy heart that we report the passing of Garry Watchorn a valued colleague, mentor, and business partner.
Garry was a talented designer of communities, an architect, landscape architect, and urban designer. Prior to joining Milus Bollenberghe Topps in the early 1980’s Garry had gained a decade of valuable experience as “Director of Planning and Design, New Communities” for one of Canada’s largest developers The Cadillac Fairview Corporation Limited establishing himself as a leader in community design and architectural design guidance.
Garry became a principal at what was then Milus Bollenberghe Topps in 1987 and subsequently the Managing Principal of The MBTW Group and President of Watchorn Architect Inc., remaining active in the practice until his retirement from our partnership.
Garry’s entrepreneurial spirit and keen understanding of the marketplace, coupled with his commitment to design excellence always brought added value to the design and development of innovative and successful communities such as Oak Park, The Beach and countless others through the GTA and beyond.
It was Garry’s mantra that everything a resident or visitor sees and touches as they arrive and venture through a community contributes to their experience. To enhance the user experience Garry would bring together consulting teams from the planning, engineering, and marketing and combined with his architecture and landscape architectural strengths, embark on truly multi-disciplinary collaboratively journeys through the design and implementation of new communities in pursuit of the highest design excellence possible. From the building’s massing, colour, architectural style and the distribution of homes along a street to front yard landscaping, fencing, to street furniture and municipal roadway standards nothing was beyond Garry’s consideration in his quest to enhance the experience of the resident.
Garry has had a significant positive influence on the development of communities with and beyond the GTA. Garry pushed the boundaries and promoted “new urbanism” or “neo-traditional” planning approaches, encouraging the building industry to adopt sustainable practices while balancing the market acceptance of these innovations.
Garry’s passion and spirit continues to resonate at MBTW-WAI, where due his mentorship, guidance and friendship, the next generation of designers strive to achieve his vision.
View the obituary and learn more about the arrangements using the following link: