May 16, 2021

Hobin Architecture helps build communities in more than one way

A city is more than just a collection of buildings and neighbourhoods.

It’s the people that make a city a community.

Focusing on people and the community has been the guiding light for local architectural design firm Hobin Architecture since its founding in 1979.

Architect Bryan Bonell, an Associate at Hobin who has been with the firm for over 30 years, has seen this principal guide the team in many of its design projects.

“We’re not just looking to make beautiful buildings, we also want to contribute to the fabric of the city and help provide services to people in need,” Bonell said.

Today, the firm continues to find new ways to contribute to building community in Ottawa, both through its design skills and its philanthropic efforts.

Earlier this year, Hobin Architecture started a fundraising campaign called You Give, We Give to encourage new donors to support four local charities, including The Ottawa Mission, The Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa, The Multifaith Housing Initiative, and Cornerstone Housing For Women.

For the campaign, Hobin is matching new donations to the four organizations until the end of June, up to a total of $10,000 per beneficiary.

Choosing organizations that focus on providing affordable housing was a response to what they see as a growing crisis.

“We have such a shortage of affordable housing in the city,” Bonell said. “It’s reached crisis proportions.”

Through its design work, the firm has also helped contribute to providing high-quality, affordable housing throughout the city.

The firm’s founder Barry Hobin got his start in residential housing and that evolved into community-oriented affordable projects like the redevelopment of Beaver Barracks, the Bethany Hope Centre, and The Haven.

Hobin’s connection to The Mission runs deep, with one of the firm’s partners Gordon Lorimer serving on our board for many years.

The firm has also supported The Mission with their design talents, assisting with the expansion of the Diane Morrison Hospice, as well as renovations at the former LifeHouse building adjacent to The Mission at 55 Daly Ave.

For Bonell, the satisfaction from working on projects like those at The Mission comes from seeing them used to do good work.

“I think as a firm, we feel a certain responsibility to the community as a whole,” he said. “So it’s nice seeing everything come together and then turning the building over to a group of people who are really dedicated to helping the community.”

Help contribute to Hobin’s You Give, We Give campaign