Carlington Coffee House

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Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Urban Design


4,000 sq.ft



Located on a busy main street, this mid-century CMHC home had been converted into a popular coffee shop in the neighbourhood. The project, #CCH_Recaffeinated, sought to create a new landscape plan that would both attract customers and help guide them to the patio in the back of the property.

To stay within budget, the project repurposes wood pallets to create pathways and pavilions. These discarded wood elements become features in the backyard. The “Pods” take its design cues from the original house and become a unique feature where people can congregate outside. The project also capitalized on discarded milk crates which had been left on site from previous deliveries. These modular and strong boxes are stacked and reconfigured in the backyard to create seating and meeting places.

The coffee shop’s logo is subtly placed throughout the design and repositioned as yellow arrows. These symbols direct patrons towards the order window and to the rear patio. Circulation flows into the backyard on an elevated boardwalk made of reclaimed wood. The centerpiece is a new bocci ball court which provides a fun distraction and simultaneously offers a space for picnicking during evening concerts.

The final design gave this business a jolt of caffeine that both enlivens the business and makes customers come back for more.