U of T’s deep urban expertise, across all fields, is tackling the future of cities. The School of Cities is where educators, institutions, practitioners and the public will engage in research, education and outreach to drive forward new city solutions – and a shared prosperity for all citizens.
The Multidisciplinary Urban Capstone Project (MUCP) is a unique, full academic year capstone design course offered by the University of Toronto. All projects are sourced from cities, community groups and non-governmental organizations for whom the project addresses a real urban need, and requires a multidisciplinary approach to solve.
Each project is assigned to a team of fourth-year undergraduates drawn from different disciplines. Student teams work through a creative, iterative, and open-ended design process to design solutions to meet client needs. Successfully completing the project requires that students integrate skills and knowledge from across multiple disciplines. Current participating undergraduate departments and faculties are Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering, John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Department of Geography and Planning, Rotman School of Management, the Urban Studies Program at Innis College, the Department of Sociology (UTSC and UTSG), Department of Computer Science, School of Environment, and the Faculty of Information.
All of the 2021-2022 projects are posted.
Bronte Village BIA "BronteForward!"
In Winter/Spring 2021, the Bronte BIA, in partnership with non-profit 8 80 Cities, will lead a community visioning & engagement initiative called BronteForward! to define what locals and visitors want Bronte to look, feel, taste and smell like in 2040. The Bronte BIA calls upon UofT students to develop short and medium-term public realm and mobility strategy, best practice guidelines for seniors’ neighbourhoods and quick, cheap and easy tactics to help evolve Bronte as a ’15-minute neighbourhood’ as per outcomes of the BronteForward!
Park People "Homelessness in Parks"
Park People is a national charity that helps people activate the power of parks to improve the quality of life in Canadian cities. In response to a need for more inclusive approaches to homelessness in parks, Park People released research exploring Canadian case studies of leading practices for park programming and engagement with unhoused communities. With the help of U of T students, Park People would like to build on this work by developing park design guidelines and models that support the dignity and wellbeing of people experiencing homelessness in Canadian city parks. Students would creatively challenge the status quo of defensive design in parks by showcasing inclusive design alternatives.
HousingNowTO.com “Affordable Housing at 3933 Keele Street”
HousingNowTO.com is a volunteer group that works to assess the potential for affordable housing developments on city-owned surplus land. HousingNowTO.com has asked UofT students to review the Housing Now site at Eglinton and Avenue Road above the Crosstown LRT station, and conduct site context analysis to recommend one (or more) affordable housing development concept with a planning rationale, massing, along with proforma analysis.
City of Toronto “Remote Sensors in the Public Realm”
The City of Toronto is currently developing a Digital Infrastructure Plan (DIP), a policy framework and governance model to guide the introduction of connected, smart technologies and create the conditions for responsible and ethical digital innovation. An integral component of the DIP work is developing a decision-making framework to govern remote sensors. The City of Toronto calls upon UofT students to design a best practice approach for a program to classify remote sensor technologies in the public realm and managing the data that they collect.
City of Toronto "ConnectTO"
High-speed internet is necessary for City of Toronto residents to equitably participate in day-to-day life. Some Torontonians and businesses don't have access to high-speed internet, with cost and literacy as two of the major barriers. ConnectTO is a Council-supported program to bring access to affordable high-speed internet for all Toronto residents and businesses, especially those who are vulnerable and underserved by digital infrastructure. The City is seeking a student team to investigate the social and residential impacts of ConnectTO in participating communities.
Toronto Lands Corporation "Reimagining School Yards"
The model for outdoor play and educational space at Toronto District School Board (TDSB) schools is rooted in traditional low-rise school design on sites with significant amounts of dedicated green / open space (often around 2 hectares). However, increased development pressures and the TDSB’s need to address school maintenance backlogs have led to considerations of incorporating schools into larger new development master plans and / or redevelopment plans, including in the podiums of residential condos as well as office towers. TLC asks UofT students to aid in the rethinking of what outdoor play and educational space look like and how it can be used.
ArtworxTO: Year of Public Art
ArtworxTO: Toronto's Year of Public Art 2021-2022 celebrates Toronto’s exceptional public art collection and the artists behind it. This initiative supports artists and new artwork that reflects Toronto's diversity and creates more opportunities for the public to engage with public art in their everyday lives. ArtworxTO, comprised of co-clients City of Toronto and PROCESS, asks UofT students to create multi-user-friendly assessment tools and systems to periodically collect and measure data to compare against key performance indicators for short, mid, and long-term outcomes.
CUI: Restore the Core
The shift to remote working precipitated by Covid-19 has had huge immediate implications for commercial real estate in all large city central business districts (CBDs), though the local context and economic structure varies. The Canadian Urban Institute (CUI) calls upon UofT students to explore the possibilities of office to residential conversions, and what scalable opportunities are available for other Canadian municipalities.
Wavelength: Reimagining Music Venues
Live music venues are valuable community and cultural spaces. However, venues in major cities such as Toronto are already facing existential threats before COVID-19: gentrification, rising rents, development pressures, dwindling audiences, and the urban exodus of the artists they serve. Wavelength Music Arts Project asks UofT students to explore new models for the organization, operation and programming of Ontario music venues, to make them more sustainable and equitable in the economic recovery post-COVID-19.
Interested students from participating faculties and departments can submit their applications to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Online application form
- Statement of Interest (not to exceed 300 words).
- This statement should clearly assert your interest in participating in the course. Please speak to a specific project, how would you approach the project (from your discipline), or what would you learn from it.
- Unofficial Transcript
Past Student Projects
Click below to learn more about our past student projects!
For the 2020/2021 academic year, the MUCP accepted 9 projects representing a range of organizations, from governments to non-profits. Click on the project icons to learn more about each project, as well as student profiles and deliverables.
For the 2019/2020 academic year, the MUCP accepted 4 projects representing municipal governments from across the GTHA. Click on the project icons to learn more about each project, as well as student profiles and deliverables.