Tag Archives: fashion district lofts
Christopher Hume – Toronto Star
Suddenly it seems everyone wants to live downtown.
In the 21st century, that’s not hard to understand. And so far, accommodating them all has not been a problem; the city is full of unused and underused sites.
Let’s not forget, there is still any number of parking lots just waiting for redevelopment. Many of these are located in the inner core, in neighbourhoods that until recently were largely industrial. Richmond Street west of Spadina is a good example; for decades, few Torontonians were interested in areas such as this, which were seen mostly as places to live rather than work.
Not now. These days, few precincts are more attractive to condo builders. It’s not hard to understand why. Well served by public transit, close to various urban amenities and eminently walkable, they are newly desirable.
The trick for planners and architects is to learn how to fit the new in with the old. For the most part, the recent stuff makes little effort to pay homage to the past, which means the two have a sometimes uneasy relationship.
Still, as far as the city’s health is concerned, these are positive developments.
This project, which faces onto Morrison as well as Adelaide, is a model of urban residential infill.
Modest, almost self-effacing, it is surrounded by low-rise redbrick buildings that have been around for years without attracting much attention. To the west, for example, there’s a two-door garage building that fails to excite. The new condo basically ignores these neighbours, and looms over them like some architectural creature from another age, which is exactly what it is. Then, Toronto was a brick city; today it’s all steel and glass and tall.
Though the building stands only eight storeys high, in this context that seems tall.
On this side, the condo itself is oriented north to Adelaide. The front consists of a series of glass balconies on the east half, a large glazed facade to the west. It’s not wildly exciting, but acceptable.
The most interesting part of the scheme is a small open space at ground level that is home to a tiny garden. Because it’s hidden behind a fence and barely visible from the street, it is a feature that brings little to the neighbourhood. But for those who take the time to stop and look, it’s a nice touch.
On Morrison St., the condo presents a much more substantial and domestic image. This is the main entrance and the underground parking garage. There’s also a row of front yards, not large but happily residential. Above are the glass and precast concrete balconies. It may not be entirely pretty, but this is a city and prettiness isn’t always appropriate.
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The Globe and Mail
When Freed Developments and Lash Development Corp. first acquired the corner lot at 455 Adelaide St. West, they didn’t quite know what to do with it. Then a team from Core Architects Inc. came up with a unique design: an L-shaped building with a variety of innovative spaces, including townhouses on the ground level and lofts above.
“There are a plethora of unique floor plans,” sales manager Craig Emond says of the project named 455 Adelaide West, and adds that many of them haven’t been seen in other projects. He notes that the developers also encourage buyers to help define and develop the unit layouts so they better suit their needs.
The 10-storey building will stretch north to Adelaide Street and toward Morrison Street to the east. It will house 93 lofts and 10 two-storey, modern townhouses that will be integrated into, rather than separated from, the main structure. One end of the townhouses will have floor-to-ceiling windows on both the first and second floors.
“Some of these townhomes have 11-foot ceilings on the ground level and 10-foot ceilings above,” Mr. Emond says. “I can assure you that’s never been done in the city.”
Located in the heart of the fashion district, the building will feature an exterior of large glass panels and sand-coloured pre-cast concrete.
The developers’ desire to merge architectural design with public space, landscaping and art will be best demonstrated by a Zen-influenced atrium, which will contain an orchard and a sculpture garden.
Inspired by St. Andrews Park across the street, the urban compound will have cast-in-place concrete walls that create a two-storey, outdoor space to guide guests from the north entrance to the main lobby. An elevated walkway will lead to a wooden bridge that will hover above a water feature.
Mr. Emond says it’s difficult for some buyers to conceptualize the project because it is unlike most conventional buildings.
The lofts at 455 Adelaide will range from one- and two-bedroom suites to penthouses featuring two terraces with more than 1,000 square feet of space. The townhouses will have large private gardens and range from 1,186 to 1,652 square feet.
Units will feature Cecconi Simone interiors with floor-to-ceiling windows and glass sliding bedroom doors. The floors will be pre-engineered hardwood or polished concrete, complemented by exposed concrete ceilings and columns with flared capitals.
The open-concept kitchens will have islands, granite countertops and stainless-steel appliances. Bathrooms will have deep soaker tubs, Corian vanities, and oversized shower stalls. Units will be prewired for the use of a range of communication and entertainment devices.
A monthly fee of 30 cents a square foot will cover the maintenance of all common elements, as well as building insurance, heat, water and air conditioning. There will be surveillance cameras in common areas and carbon monoxide detectors in all suites.