Toronto Loft Conversions

Toronto Loft Conversions

I know classic brick and beam lofts! From warehouses to factories to churches, Laurin will help you find your perfect new loft.

Modern Toronto Lofts

Modern Toronto Lofts

Not just converted lofts, I can help you find the latest cool and modern space. There are tons of new urban spaces across the city.

Unique Toronto Homes

Unique Toronto Homes

Not just lofts, we can also help you find that perfect house. From the latest architectural marvel to a piece of our Victorian past, the best and most creative spaces abound.

Condos in Toronto

Condos in Toronto

I started off selling mainly condos, helping first time buyers get a foothold in the Toronto real estate market. Now working with investors and helping empty nesters find that perfect luxury suite.

Toronto Real Estate

Toronto Real Estate

For all of your Toronto real estate needs, contact Laurin. I am dedicated to helping you find that perfect and unique new home to call your own.

 

Toronto Real Estate

Featured Listing Title

 

Candy Factory Lofts 993 Queen Street WestCandy Factory Lofts – 993 Queen Street West
The loft against which all others are measured. The Candy Factory Lofts was one of the first large loft conversion projects in Toronto, touching off the lust for lofts we all have today. Exposed brick, high ceilings, massive wooden pillars and beams – this is the loft you see in your dreams. Across the street from Trinity-Bellwoods Park and right on the Queen streetcar line, you will want for nothing in this amazing neighbourhood. CLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS

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CENTURY 21 is the only real estate organization that can reward our clients with AIR MILES reward miles on their real estate transaction.

Century 21 Air Miles Reward Program

St. Clarens Lofts – 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

The St. Clarens Lofts are the kind of loft most people only dream about. Only 11 units in this hidden loft conversion in Dufferin Grove. Some of the big ones range up to approximately 2,000 square feet, with tons of light-filled space, soaring ceilings and dramatic sight lines. Rarely does a unit become available in this unique & eclectic live/work loft conversion.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

The old Gray Manufacturing and Machine factory, now the St. Clarens Lofts

Converted in 1988, the lofts are all multi-level, with two or three bedrooms. Each loft provides for a unique living and working space set in the diverse neighbourhood of Lansdowne and Dupont. This building’s lofts were designed with work-from-home types in mind.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

Home offices come standard in the St. Clarens Lofts

They are more like townhouses, separate units with two or three levels. No amenities to speak of, there are no real common areas. Unfortunately there is not a lot of original character left, it is mainly drywall. But, if you live here, you would know that the building is over 100 years old.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

There is still some vintage factory charm in the St. Clarens Lofts

The building was once a factory for Gray Manufacturing and Machine, an industrial tool company founded in 1912. (The firm got its big break a few years later, when it started recycling brass howitzer shells used on the front lines of the First World War.) The building eventually became a cabinet factory and, in 1988, was converted into 11 condos.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

The Gray Manufacturing and Machine factory as it looked just after it was built in 1912

The year 1912 was one of great personal significance for Alex Gray in that it set his family’s course for a century. Alex, now twenty-nine, and two of his brothers incorporated the Gray Manufacturing & Machine Company Limited in September. The letterhead described the company as a “Manufacturer of steam and power pumps and special machinery”.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

Workers inside the original building, probably around 1917

When the three Gray brothers, Alex, James and Robert, were ready to launch the new company, they went in search of a site. Building a new factory was not in their budget, and yet they wanted a workplace that suited their specific needs. They found it at 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue in west Toronto. It was on the west side of St. Clarens, south of Dupont Street (known as Royce Avenue until the 1950s). This two-storey, red-brick building was ideal because it had a very high ceiling in the centre to accommodate the tall machinery and an overhead crane. There were offices on either side of the ground floor with large multi-paned windows to let light into the premises. From 1912 to 1928, this remained the home of the new company.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

Working in the old factory in 1917

Business was going so well, the company needed more space. They left the original factory at 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue and built a new and larger facility across the street. The business had been gradually growing for many years, not only in technology and manufacturing expertise but also in physical space. In 1937, a single-storey addition was added to the west side of the factory. This increased the building size to 43,000 square feet so that it extended the full length of the city block. The company now had three street frontages and was at a main intersection serviced by two bus lines. This made it a site that employees and customers could easily access.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

The largest extent of Gray Manufacturing and Machine, as seen in 1953, before they moved to Brampton in 1970 (where they are still located today!)

The construction of the current Gray Tools facility in Brampton, Ontario took place throughout the winter of 1969 and the spring of 1970. Thus ended their presence on St. Clarens Avenue. The majority of the factory, behind 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue is long gone, the site now occupied by the Christie Ossington Neighbourhood Centre. The warehouse across the street, on the east side of St. Clarens, replaced by houses.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

The St. Clarens Lofts can be more like townhouses at times

The original factory was bought Mr. & Mrs. Boxer, who ran a kitchen and bathroom cabinet making company from the site until they sold the property in early 1987. Amazingly it was re-sold only 7 months later for $105,000 more! Unfortunately, there is essentially no record at all of the cabinet makers that were in the building from 1970 to 1987.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

Modern kitchen in the St. Clarens Lofts at 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

The building is tucked away in Dufferin Grove, a community-minded neighborhood, steps from a gorgeous 14-acre park that is the heart of the area. The park has hosted a range of services and gatherings such as potluck suppers and year-round farmers’ markets with a communal outdoor oven; there’s even parkwide Wi-Fi for bench surfing.

St. Clarens Lofts - 686-692 St. Clarens Avenue

Another home office example in the St. Clarens Lofts

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Contact Laurin Jeffrey for more information – 416-388-1960

Laurin Jeffrey is a Toronto real estate agent with Century 21 Regal Realty.
He did not write every article, some are reproduced here for people who
are interested in Toronto real estate. He does not work for any builders.

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