As a life-long LEGO enthusiast, I have enjoyed the power of the brick for over 40 years. Its ability to spark ideas, develop creative models, build confidence, and of course, allow for unstructured, fun play, gives rise to its status as the most popular toy in the world. With passion, we decided to create a facility where brick lovers could gather and “discover their inner brickness”. After more than a year in the works, Brick Labs Inc. is ready to welcome guests for parties, clubs, field trips, facilitation sessions, special events, and drop-ins.
Our four themed Labs allow builders to innovate in their areas of interest: Art & Architecture, Transportation, Robotics or Movie Making. In addition to our remarkable facility, we created a set of values for our Brick Technicians to pass on to fellow builders of all ages: They are simple in nature, but powerful when lived: Effort is Exponential; Trying is Learning; Imagination is Powerful; and Collaboration Leads to Better.
We look forward to growing the brick building community in Toronto by not only giving you the bricks and the space, but the encouragement to innovate, explore, collaborate and discover.
The Story Behind Brick Labs Inc.
In 2016, my then 14-year old son and I had a bit of a dilemma to deal with. There were a few women in his life suggesting he “clean up” his LEGO. His collection over the years had grown from not only our house, but that of my mother’s and his other grandmother’s cottage. Shelves loaded with models he had been building for almost 10 years lined living rooms. Huge Rubbermaid containers filled with loose bricks filled closets and basements. It was a problem many a LEGO lover has faced: When and what do you do with your Bricks? I was lucky, I held on to, and hid mine long enough to give to my son. But he had 20 times that amount.
With both our brains put together we came up with an idea. We dusted off an old pitch I had done for an MBA class, modified it and after one year of planning and building, Brick Labs Inc. opened its doors July 24th, 2017.
For a young teenager who has been heavily exposed to Family Business planning (Transitions Conferences) and Family meetings, this would be the perfect opportunity to “walk the talk”. Matthew is Generation 3 on his Mother’s side as well as my side of the Family Business game. Is 15 too young to go “operational”? Is working with your Dad a good idea? We will soon find out. While there have been a few bumpy spots, for the most part it has been an amazing ride so far. He’s learned about leasing, banking, insurance, construction, hiring, and everything else that goes with a start-up. I can only hope the learning continues.