Ellen Vera Allen’s firms (Allen & Lea Inc.) have produced more than 1600 residential units in over 30 housing developments. The client list includes individuals, private developers, municipal and private non-profits, citizen groups, volunteer boards, charities and service agencies. The projects have been targeted for traditional families, single parent households, singles and seniors, and have accommodated artists, women’s groups, and many other special needs users. Construction types range from wood-frame construction to concrete apartment buildings with underground parking, and technical scope include heritage restoration and rehabilitation of deficient building envelopes
Allen Ensslen Barrett received the City of Toronto 1997 Urban Design Award for the Larch Street Housing for Cityhome, near Spadina and Dundas, and the Ontario Association of Architects and Canadian House and Home 1990 Residential Design Award for the St. Nicholas Housing Co-operative at Bay and Inkerman.
Phillip H. Carter, Architect and Ellen Vera Allen, Architect (in joint venture) received the Ontario Library Association 2010 Award of Excellence for the S.Walter Stewart Branch Library of the Toronto Public Library.
In 1995, Ellen Vera Allen wrote a manual, Designing Channels for Health, about the entire planning, design and construction process, commissioned by the Association of Community Health Centres in association with the Ministry of Health.
Ellen Vera Allen’s outreach work has included workshops such as Designing with Kids in Mind for the Ontario Non Profit Housing Association; she has been a member of the Permanent Facility Planning Committee of the Harbourfront Community Centre, and was a Provincial appointee in 1994-5 to the Toronto Islands Residential Community Trust. From 2002 – 2011 she served on the Executive of the Toronto Island Community Association (TICA) and on the Board of the Toronto Island Residential Community Land Trust (TIRCT), serving as Chair from 2006 – 2011.
Currently she is a member of the Board of Artscape Non-Profit Homes Inc., sits on the Appraisals Committee of TIRCT, and is a member of the executive committees of the Trinity-Spadina provincial NDP Riding Association, and the Spadina-Fort York federal NDP Riding Association.