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A Citizens’ Guide to Density by Urban Strategies Inc.

March, 2012


The Renaissance, Richmond Hill


Table of Contents Citizens’ Guide to Density 1 Introduction » The Imperative » The Benefits of Density

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2 Approach & Methodology » A Focus on Form » Site Selection » Calculating Density » Sidebar: Density Explained

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3 The Case Studies » How to read the Case Studies » The 30 Case Studies

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4 Findings from the Case Studies » Location and infrastructure » Built form and site planning » Parking and points of entry » Outdoor spaces

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5 Glossary

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6 Appendix: Case Study Site Plans

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7 Resources

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8 Acknowledgments

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Copyright © 2012 Urban Strategies Inc. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or in any means – by electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise – without prior written permission.


Port Credit Village, Mississauga


1 Introduction

The Imperative Canadian cities are growing rapidly. From 2001 to 2006, the population of Canadian cities grew at an average rate of 1.2% per year. Larger Canadian cities with populations of at least 100,000 are growing even faster – at 1.4% per year. At this rate, these cities and their suburbs will double in population every 50 years. Accommodating this growth is a challenge. All too often, improperly managed growth has resulted in congestion, sprawl, and unhealthy, car-oriented urban environments. With abundant open space at their edges and few checks on suburban development, most Canadian cities continue to spread outwards, producing neighbourhoods that rank among the lowest urban densities on the continent.

The Growth Plan, in particular, set out policies and targets to help the rapidly growing municipalities in the GTHA shift away from sprawling development, congestion and inefficient use of infrastructure and resources. The Growth Plan’s residential intensification targets seek to divert a substantial portion of residential development away from the natural and agricultural areas at municipal peripheries and toward established urban areas, where they can take advantage of existing roads, infrastructure and services. Density targets aim to promote liveable places and good urban form with sufficient numbers of people and jobs to support functioning public transit systems, strong local economies and vibrant, more complete communities.

Nowhere has this been more evident than in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA). Low-density development in the GTHA, one of the fastest growing regions in North America, has resulted in traffic congestion that costs the region approximately 6 billion dollars per year in lost productivity. Dispersed and disconnected development patterns carry with them high infrastructure and servicing costs that cash-strapped municipalities find increasingly difficult to bear. Moreover, these development patterns are exceptionally resource intensive and negatively impact the environment.

Achieving the targets set out in the Growth Plan means that more compact and larger building forms will need to be constructed in towns and cities across the region. This presents a significant challenge to cities as the majority of the neighbourhoods in the GTHA, like those that dominate cities throughout the country, are built at exceptionally low densities. Furthermore, the history of higher density development in North America, notably the neglected public housing projects of mid-centry, has made residents wary of such proposals. Higher density development is frequently expected to lower property values, detract from neighbourhood quality, create traffic congestion, and overload local services.

Recognizing the pitfalls associated with this type of development, in the spring of 2005 the Government of Ontario passed a series of policies and supporting legislation aimed at changing the way population growth is managed in the GTHA and surrounding region – collectively known as the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH). This framework, consisting of the Provincial Policy Statement, The Greenbelt Act, The Greenbelt Plan, The Places to Grow Act and the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe (The Growth Plan), set a course toward a markedly more compact, livable urban region.

Yet these are far from inevitable outcomes of higher density development. In fact, well designed and executed higher density projects have the exact opposite effects on surrounding communities. At the same time as boosting the population required to support local businesses and transit, residential intensification projects can add to the diversity of an area’s buildings, create visual interest, increase the quantity and quality of open space, improve the architectural quality, and generally create liveable places and good urban form. 1


The Benefits of Density This Citizens’ Guide to Density is designed to show how various projects within the GTHA have increased overall residential density, while improving the form, character, and livability of the neighbourhoods in which they are situated. The Guide presents 30 case studies in well-designed residential density, and discusses, in detail, the merits of each. The case studies illustrate how thoughtful treatment of the aspects of built form that most affect the day-to-day experience of a particular place – height and shadows; access and parking; layout, look and feel of buildings, streets, sidewalks, and open space – can lead to high quality, desirable development. The aim of the Guide is to demonstrate that greater residential density, in and of itself, should not be a cause for concern, but should rather be seen as an opportunity to be harnessed. Although examples of well executed higher residential density have been selected from the GTHA, the findings from the case studies will be applicable across Canada. As Canadian communities are increasingly seeking to chart paths away from unsustainable, low-density development towards more compact, livable places, it is hoped that this Guide will serve as a valuable resource in demonstrating the benefits of wellplanned, higher-density residential neighbourhoods.

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At its simplest, increasing residential density means housing the same amount of people on a smaller amount of land (see Diagram 1), or housing a greater number of people on the same amount of land (see Diagram 2). Immediately, we can see that density has clear implications for the preservation of open space and land based resources – natural heritage areas, environmentally sensitive places, and prime agricultural lands (see Diagram 3). Density also affects commuting times and distances. An increase in residential density means that a greater number of people are located closer to the schools, stores, jobs, and services that exist in cities and suburban centres. Although increased density does not always equate to decreased travel time, lower densities are almost always associated with longer travel distances and travel times.


Additional benefits become apparent when we consider several additional facts of urban economics: 1) The fixed costs of large capital projects, such as roads, sewer mains and water mains, decreases when divided amongst a greater number of people. The same is true for large public expenditures on facilities such as parks, libraries and skating rinks.

Diagram 1: Increased density can mean fitting the same amount of people on a smaller amount of land.

2) Many services and businesses depend on a critical mass of potential clients within a given catchment area before service provision becomes viable. This is also true of small scale neighbourhood retail businesses, schools and transit service. Increasing residential density increases the cost effectiveness of providing roads, infrastructure, community facilities and social programs. Increasing residential density also increases the range of businesses and services that can be provided within an area. A greater range of places of employment, shopping and recreation closer at hand has further positive effects on commuting time.

Diagram 2: Increased density can also mean fitting a larger amount of people on the same amount of land.

The smaller unit sizes associated with higher density housing forms are inherently more affordable – a boon for those households with smaller space requirements: singles, new families and single parent households, as well as those with statistically lower average incomes - seniors, the disabled and new immigrant families.

Diagram 2: Increased density can better accommodate open space and natural heritage preservation.

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Diagram 4: Increasing residential density increases the cost effectiveness of providing roads, infrastructure, community facilities and social programs.

Seen differently, increased residential density is often the result of providing a greater diversity of housing choice within Canadian neighbourhoods. This housing diversity leads to a number of benefits. In low-density neighbourhoods, dominated by single and semi-detached housing, there are few options for elderly residents who wish to remain within their neighbourhoods while downsizing to more manageable, senior-friendly housing. Sensitive infill can provide the types of housing necessary to allow seniors to age-in-place while transitioning to more age-appropriate housing conditions. New neighbourhoods, built with a greater diversity of home sizes and densities – from apartments to detached homes – provide a range of housing choice that makes aging in-place possible. As Canadian cities age and diversify, new housing models appropriate to these changing demographic realities will be required.

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Increasingly, the traditional suburban housing model is seen to be a poor fit for Canadian demographic realities. Greater proportions of young couples, single parent headed households, and new immigrant families mean that more compact and affordable housing options are in higher demand. Higher density townhomes, low-rise and highrise apartments with ample, well designed amenity space can provide excellent alternative family housing models. Integrated into new or existing neighbourhoods, they can contribute to a mix of housing that is more tailored to the changing family housing needs of Canadian society.


2 Approach and Methodology

A Focus on Form This Guide identifies exemplary case studies in increased residential density throughout the GTHA. Case studies were selected for their contribution to the neighbourhood at the site level, as well as their integration within the broader neighbourhood.

Higher residential density can be delivered in any number of forms – semi-detached, town or row housing, walkup apartments and garden flats, mid-rise and high-rise apartment buildings. Each of these forms is suited to a particular urban environment. Evaluation of the examples in context is key to understanding the appropriateness of each form. We sought to find examples of four building types which serve to enhance their site and surroundings.

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Attached (towns/rows)

Low-rise Apartments

Townhomes and row houses are generally defined as two to three storey structures that share a wall, or two walls, with a neighbouring housing unit. These forms do not have neighbouring units above or below them.

(grade related apartments, garden flats, walk-ups)

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Low-rise housing may be grade-related units or house-form apartment buildings, and are generally 2 to 4 storeys. Form can range from stacked townhomes to house-form apartment buildings. Grade related housing provides direct access from the front door of each housing unit to the street, sidewalk or courtyard, while house-form buildings are typically organized around a central lobby and/or corridor.


Mid-rise Apartments

High-rise Apartments

Mid-rise apartment buildings are generally between 4 and 6 storeys high with access to apartment units provided by a central lobby, elevator(s) and corridor(s).

High-rise apartments are generally higher than 6 storeys with access to apartment units provided by a central lobby, elevator(s) and corridor(s).

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Site Selection Several methods were used to identify and select amongst high quality case studies in the GTHA. First, background research was conducted to establish a range of criteria against which to evaluate prospective developments. Dozens of criteria from academic, professional, and industry publications were distilled to a series of seven questions to guide site selection efforts. 1. Is the surrounding neighbourhood able to support density?

An eight member Peer Review Committee of prominent GTHA urban planners, designers, architects and developers provided input into the development of the guide and the selection of case studies. Peer Review Committee members were circulated the long list of candidate sites and invited to one of two Peer Review Committee meetings, to select the top 30 sites. Upon selection, each site was visited and photographed. Key dimensions were measured and statistics were confirmed.

2. How well does the development respond to its context?

Calculating Density

3. Does the development contribute to or add to its surroundings?

In order to understand and plan for the right amount of people, jobs, housing, businesses and community services within a given area, it is important to calculate the density of people, and do it in a consistent way.

4. What is the material quality of the built form? 5. Does the design of the development support changing uses over time? 6. What is the quality of the parking solution? 7. How attractive and usable is the open space provided by the development? Researchers were then tasked with using Google Maps, municipal planning and design award lists, industry contacts, and citizen and developer websites to identify a long list of 80 developments which were then evaluated through the lens of the seven questions above.

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There are a number of ways to calculate residential density (see sidebar on the next page). This report uses units of housing per hectare, or units per hectare (#/ha). Land area was calculated based on the property on which the development is sited - also known as net residential density. Laneways were included when it was clear they were privately owned and maintained.


Sidebar: Density Explained There are a number of ways to measure density in order to understand and plan for the right amount of people, jobs, housing, businesses and community services within a given area. The three most common approaches are: Floor space Index (FSI) / Floor Area Ratio (FAR) • This approach is used to measure the intensity of a site being developed. It can be applied to any land use (i.e. residential, employment). It is a ratio of the total floor area of the building(s) in relation to the area of the lot upon which it is constructed. • For instance, an FSI of 2.0 would indicate that the total floor area of a building is two times the area of the lot on which it is constructed. This may take the form of a building that is two storeys in height and occupies the entire area of the lot, or a building that is taller than two storeys, but occupies less than the total lot area. Population Density (PPH) • This approach is used to measure the density of people (or jobs) within a given area. This measurement is useful to plan for a wide range of municipal services, and to design for transit supportive communities. The measure can be applied to any land use, and is calculated by dividing the total population by the given area. • For instance, if it can be expected that two residents typically occupy each apartment unit within a development, than the total population is obtained by multiplying the number of units by 2 residents. Once obtained, the total population can be divided by the area of the development to determine the population density.

Residential Density – (UPH / UPA) • This measure is typically used to calculate the number of housing units within an area of land. It can be applied at a variety of scales, to measure the density of a single lot, block, or neighbourhood. • The measure is usually applied to units per hectare of land (UPH), or units per acre of land (UPA).

Net-to-gross: Residential densities vary according to how much land is included in the calculation. A large area, containing a great deal of roads, parking and open space will have a lower density than a small area that is covered primarily by housing. In municipal planning and development, residential density is typically measured as “net” or “gross.” “Net density” refers to the number of housing units in a given area of land devoted to residential development. While it includes driveways, private yards, ancillary structures, and other elements intended for private use, it does not include public rights of way and park land. “Gross density” refers to the number of housing units in a given area, but includes infrastructure such as streets, sidewalks and public spaces. This report uses ‘net density’ to ensure that measurements are more easily comparable to one another, excluding as much as possible the unique characteristics of topography and infrastructure beyond the boundary of each private development lot.

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3 The Case Studies How to read the case studies Each case study page provides a comprehensive look at the development, and outlines in words and graphics all of the characteristics that make the development a good example of density. Here’s what to look for as you read the case studies:

Olde York Village City of Toronto

9m

Inaugural Source Homes

DEVELOPMENT NAME AND LOCATION Gives you the name of the building or property, and tells you in which municipality it is located.

1.5m

~ 9m / 3 st

SECTION CUTS Shows the relationship of buildings in the development to neighbouring buildings, and to each other. Specific locations of the cut lines are indicated in the axonometric view.

4m

1.5m

3m

1.5m

Old Primrose Lane

Old Trillium Lane

P1

P3

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P2

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Humane Society

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Tucked away behind the Wmain streets, Olde York Village uses the building traditions of old Toronto to intensify the neighbourhood Fee Pl in a familiar way. High-quality materials, E the village feel created by the building n St Quee layout, and the clever treatment of parking all work together to make Olde 28 York Village a beautiful precedent as the neighbourhood around it enters a period of renewal.

~ 9m / 3 st

Building height (in storeys and metres)

P1 P4

P3

Property lines P5

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CONTEXT • Olde York Village is situated in the Corktown neighbourhood of Toronto at the intersection of King St. E and Queen St. E, just west of the Don Valley, and just east of River Street. • The development faces the rear lane of the row houses which line River Street. • Building forms in the neighbourhood vary, from the 2-3 story row houses along River St to the 4-6 story lofts built on the adjacent Old Brewery site, to the high-rise community of Regent Park. The area is also abutted by various commercial uses. • The Don Valley is just to the east. • The neighbourhood is currently in flux - a large commercial property to the north is being converted to townhomes, and Regent Park is being converted to mixedincome, mixed-density neighbourhoods, transforming the composition of the area. FAMILIAR ARCHITECTURE

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1.5m

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1.5m

CONTEXT • Olde York Village is situated in the Corktown neighbourhood of Toronto at the Sect intersection of King Street E and Queen ion B Street E, just west of the Don Valley, and just east of River Street. • The development faces the rear lane of the row houses lining River Street. • Building forms in the neighbourhood vary, from the 2-3 storey row houses along River Street to the 4-6 storey lofts built on the adjacent Old Brewery site, to the highrise community of Regent Park. The area is also abutted by various commercial uses. Articulation of the façade creates • The Don Valley is just to the east. • The neighbourhood is currently in ux - a interest and keeps the development large commercial property to the north feeling like a flat slab. is being converted to townhomes, and The use of red brick and the garden nearby Regent Park is being converted landscaping in thetomews createsmixed-density a mixed-income, small-scale, comfortable feeling transforming place. neighbourhoods, the composition of the area.

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Developer

Inaugural Source Homes

3m

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Ol tt Ave

1.5m

Landscape Architect

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AXONOMETRIC VIEW Shows the overall form and massing of theArchitect development, including all buildings, the surrounding Landscape Architect Old Primrose Old Trillium street grid, and where the corresponding photographs Lane Lane and sections cuts were taken.

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Tucked away behind the main streets, Olde York Village uses the building traditions of old Toronto to intensify the neighbourhood in a familiar way. High-quality materials, the village feel created by the building layout, and the clever treatment of parking all work together to make Olde York Village a beautiful precedent as the neighbourhood around it enters a period of renewal.

P4

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4m

1.5m

7m

City of Toronto

1.5m

4m

7m

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Olde York Village 9m

Developer

CLEVER USE OF GRADE CHANGE FAMILIAR ARCHITECTURE The perceived height of the development is • The development takes the form of 4 by using the grade Olde minimized York Village rows of change. townhomes, arranged facing • Because the development isalong built aatmews the – a small each other pedestrian street. edge of the river valley, underground The buildings are each 3 residential stories, garage parking•is provided under with a 4th basement oor for parking. unit, accessible by private lane. • Each unit has a front stoop and a patio, • This then allows theeither development to at the rear or at West Don Lands over the garage retain 3 residentialthe floors the frontabove of the development. parking without increasing height. It also allows for at-grade front doors.

A VILLAGE FEEL Olde York Village is among the densest of the townhouse developments studied, but through the use of short blocks, hidden parking, narrower units, and lush landscaping it maintains the feeling of a small village. • This small village feel is also reinforced by the architectural variety around it – because the old brewery site has been developed as a number of different properties, this very highdensity area feels like a handful of small neighbourhoods. • The position of the development off of all main streets has created a sense of or Case Study Institutional insulation, but it is still well-connected enough to the rest of the city to not feel Development Employment isolated. • The low-rise nature of the development, Mixed-use/retail Residential the organization around two mews streets, and the proximity of the front doors has led to a very tight knit community. The homeowners association regularly organizes events such as talent

CONTEXT MAP Shows you how the development relates to its surrounding context. The different colours represent different P2 land uses.

P3


BUILDING TYPOLOGY Indicates the form and massing of the building. The appropriate typology is circled for each case study.

Olde York Village Olde York Village Olde York Village

Town or Rowhouse: 2-4 storeys, graderelated, attached or semi-detached

City of Toronto

Low-rise: 2-4 storeys, grade-related or walk-up

City of Toronto

9m

City of Toronto

9m

Olde York Village

1.5m

4m

1.5m

3m 9m

7m

City of Toronto

1.5m

4m

Old 1.5m

1.5m

Primrose 3m Lane

1.5m

4m

1.5m

Developer

Mid-Rise: 4-7 storeys, central lobby(s) Inaugural Source Homes

Developer Architect

and/or corridor(s)

Inaugural Homes 7+ storeys, central lobby(s) - SourceHigh-Rise:

Developer 7m Architect and/or corridor(s) Inaugural Source Homes Landscape Architect Trillium

4m

Old 1.5m

Lane

-

-

Architect 1.5m 1.5m 3m 1.5m 9m1.5m Landscape Architect Old Primrose Old Trillium Developer 4m 4m 7m

7m

Lane

7m

Old Primrose Lane

Lane Inaugural Source Homes Tucked away behind the main streets, Olde

7m

Landscape Architect York Village uses the building traditions of Architect-

Old Trillium Olde York Village Lane City of Toronto

old Toronto to intensify the neighbourhood Tucked away behind the streets, Olde in a familiar way.main High-quality materials, York Village the building traditions of the uses village feel created by the building • Articulation of the façade creates Landscape Architect Old Primrose Old Trillium old Toronto to intensify the neighbourhood Tucked away behind the main streets, Olde layout, and the clever treatment of interest and keeps the development Lane Lane in auses familiar High-quality materials, York Village the way. building traditions of to make Olde from feeling like a at slab. parking all work together 126.2P1u/ha • The use of red brick and the garden theto village feel created by the building old Toronto intensify the neighbourhood York Village a beautiful precedent as the P4 landscaping in the mews creates a layout, the clevermaterials, treatment 2,615 m2 in a familiar way.and High-quality neighbourhood around itofenters a period of small-scale, comfortable feeling place. parking all workbytogether to make Olde P1 the village feel created theOlde building renewal. 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B P2 • Olde YorkSt. Village is situated in the E, just • This allows the development to retain parking all work together to make Oldewest of the Don Valley, and just P1 P5 P3 Corktowneast neighbourhood of Toronto at three residential oors above the CONTEXT York Village a beautiful precedentofasRiver the Street. P4 Sec parking without increasing height. It intersection of King E andthe Queen tion • Oldearound Yorkthe Village situated in of theSt. faces B • isThe rear lane of neighbourhood it enters adevelopment period P2 also allows for at-grade front doors. P5 St. E, justthe west the Donwhich Valley, and justStreet. Toronto at line rowofof houses River renewal. Corktown neighbourhood Sec Riv east of River Street. the intersection King St.forms E andinQueen tion A VILLAGE FEEL er S •of Building the neighbourhood B P2 t P3 . 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St. E, just west of the Don Valley, and just tt Ave • The small village feel is reinforcedt. by the ba La adjacent Old Brewery site, to the high-rise vary, from the 2-3 story row houses along architectural variety around it – because • The Don Valley is just to the east. east of River Street. P1 community ofneighbourhood Regent Park. The area is in flux - a the old brewery site has been developed River St to the 4-6 story lofts built on the • The is currently • The development faces the rear lane of as a number of different properties, this P2: Attention to detail abutted bycommercial various uses. Toronto adjacent also Old Brewery toCity theofcommercial high-rise tt Ave largesite, property to the north Street. in the landscape, layoutthe row houses which line River Laba very high-density area feels like a handful • TheofDon Valley is converted just east. and materials give Olde Riv Citytoarea ofthe Toronto community Regent Park. 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CLEVER USE OF GRADE CHANGE t neighbourhood feel S K Society n • Because theriver development is built Feate Pthe development either over the garage at the rear or at l edge of the valley, underground with a 4th basement floor for parking. Quee rows of townhomes, arranged facing The perceived of the development is E front of the development. edge ofparking theheight riverisvalley, underground Each unitathe has a front step and a patio, garage provided under each each•other along mews – a small St g minimized by using the grade change. West Don Lands nYork 10 E either over the garage at the rear or at i ry Ln garage parking isbyprovided under each P3 t Olde Village e P5 pedestrian street. e Pl S w unit, accessible private Felane. K en ld Bre e O u ve A Q • unit, Because the development is built at the a the front the development. scanprivate lane. tE • The buildings are 3ofresidential stories, accessible Humane Waby 1.5m

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Articulation of the façade creates interest and keeps the developme feeling like a flat slab. • Articulation theoffaçade creates • Theofuse red brick and the garde interest and keeps theindevelopment landscaping the mews creates a feeling like a flat slab. Articulation of thesmall-scale, façade creates comfortable feeling pl • and Thekeeps use ofthe reddevelopment brick and the garden interest landscaping the mews creates a feeling like a CLEVER flat slab.in USE OF GRADE CHANGE small-scale, comfortable feeling place. The use of red brick and theheight garden The perceived of the developme

P1

• landscaping in the mewsbycreates a grade change. minimized using the Articulation of the façade creates CLEVER • USE Because OF GRADE small-scale, feeling place. theCHANGE development is built a interest and keeps thecomfortable development The perceivededge height development is of of thethe river valley, undergroun feeling like a flat slab. minimized by garage using the gradeischange. USE OFand GRADE CHANGE parking provided under e • The CLEVER use of red brick the garden • Because the development is built at the The perceived ofunit, the accessible development by is private lane. landscaping in the height mews creates a the river valley, underground minimized by edge using the grade change. •of This then allows the development small-scale, comfortable feeling place. garage parking is provided under • Because the development is built at the retain 3 residential floorseach above th unit, accessible by privateincreasing lane. of the river valley, underground parking without height. CLEVER USE edge OF GRADE CHANGE • parking This then allows the development to garage is provided under each also allowsisfor at-grade front doors The perceived height of the development retain 3byresidential floors above the unit, accessible private lane. minimized by using the grade change. without increasing height. It • This thenparking allows the development A VILLAGE FEEL • Because the development is built at the to alsoOlde allows forVillage at-grade front doors. retain residential floors above York is the among the densest edge of the river3 valley, underground parkingiswithout increasing height. It of the townhouse developments studie garage parking provided under each A VILLAGE FEEL also allows for at-grade but through the doors. use of short blocks, unit, accessible by private lane. front Olde Yorkhidden Villageparking, is among the densest • This then allows the development to narrower units, and lus of FEEL the townhouse developments studied, A VILLAGE landscaping retain 3 residential floors above theit maintains the feeling of through thevillage. use short blocks, Oldewithout Yorkbut Village issmall among theofItdensest parking increasing height. hidden parking, narrower units, and lush reinforc the townhouse developments studied, • Thisdoors. small village feel is also alsoof allows for at-grade front landscaping itshort maintains the feeling of aaround but through the use of blocks, by the architectural variety small village.it – because hidden units, and thelush old brewery site A VILLAGE FEELparking, narrower • This small village feel is of also it maintains the feeling a reinforced been developed as a number of Olde Yorklandscaping Village is among thehas densest by the architectural variety around small village. different properties, this very highof the townhouse developments studied, it – because the old brewery site • This small feel is also reinforced density area feels like a handful of s but through the use of village short blocks, has beenneighbourhoods. developed as a number of by the architectural variety around hidden parking, narrower units, and lush different properties, this verydevelopment highbecause the • old Thebrewery position of the off landscapingitit–maintains the feeling of a site density area feels like a handful of small as a number of created all main streets has a sense small village.has been developed neighbourhoods. different properties, this very highinsulation, but it is still well-connecte • This small village feel is also reinforced • area The feels position the ofto not density likeof a handful of small to development the rest of theoff city by the architectural variety enough around all main streets has created a sense of neighbourhoods. isolated. it – because the old brewery site insulation, but it is stillnature well-connected • The position of• development off ofof the developm The low-rise has been developed as athe number of enoughhas to the rest of the city feel main streets created a sense ofto not the organization around two mews different all properties, this very highisolated. insulation, buta ithandful isstreets, still well-connected density area feels like of and smallthe proximity of the fron • The low-rise nature of the development, enough to the restdoors of thehas cityled to not to afeel very tight knit neighbourhoods. the organization around two mews isolated. community. • The position of the development off of The homeowners assoc streets, and the proximity of the front • The low-rise nature of the development, regularly events such as t all main streets has created a senseorganizes of doors has led totwo a very thebut organization around mews shows and pottight luck knit dinners, and eve insulation, it is still well-connected community. The homeowners association streets, and the proximity of the front hastoanot Facebook group for residents enough to the rest of the city feel regularly organizes events as talent very tight knit and sharesuch photos and storie isolated. doors has led to aconnect shows and pot luck dinners, and even community. • The low-rise nature ofThe thehomeowners development,association has a STRENGTHS Facebook group for residents to regularlyaround organizes the organization two events mews such as talent connect and share photos andarchitecture stories. shows pot •luck dinners, even High quality, familiar streets, and theand proximity of the front and residents • group Clever of gradetochange doors hashas ledatoFacebook a very tight knitforuse STRENGTHS connect and share photos and stories.of a small • Successful creation community. The homeowners association • High quality, familiar architecture neighbourhood regularly organizes events such as talent feel • Clever use of grade change STRENGTHS shows and pot luck dinners, and even • Successful creation of a small High quality, architecture has a • Facebook groupfamiliar for residents to neighbourhood feel • and Clever use of grade change connect share photos and stories. • Successful creation of a small STRENGTHSneighbourhood feel •

P1

Ol

d

Don

Br

ew er

yL

W as c

an

an

e

a

Av e.

Ol

d

Br

ew er

yL

W as c

an

a

anO eld

Br

Av e.

ew er

yL

W as c

an

a

Av e.

an O e ld

Br

ew er

yL

W as c

an

an

e

a

Av e.

~ 9m / 3 st

~ 9m / 3 st

~ 9m / 3 st

~ 9m / 3 st

SITE PLAN REFERENCE The reference number for the site plan, as arranged by density in the Appendix.

Olde York Village DEVELOPMENT Olde York Village STATISTICS

y Valle

y Valle

Pkwy

y Valle

Pkwy

Don

y Valle

Pkwy

St ach Sum

w Ave Bayvie

r St Rive

St ach Sum

St ach Sum

St ach Sum

This then allows the development to S Society West Don Lands edge of the riverthe valley, underground ng tE This allows development Sto Ki n retainthen 3 residential floors above the 10 Quee each garage parking is provided under retain residential floors above theIt parking3 without increasing height. unit, accessible by lane. e Pl Feprivate parking without increasing height. 10 also allows for at-grade front doors.It E • also This allows then allows the development St for at-grade front doors.to West Don Lands ng E t S retain 3 residential floors above the Ki n e e u A VILLAGE FEEL Q parking without increasing height. It A VILLAGE FEEL Olde York Village is among the densest also allows at-grade doors. 10 for Olde Village isdevelopments among densest THEthefront EXPLANATION of theYork townhouse studied, of townhouse developments studied, butthe through the use ofThe short written blocks, explanation for each A VILLAGE FEEL but through the use of short blocks, hidden parking, narrower units, and lush Olde York Villagenarrower is among the densest development hidden parking, units, and lush landscaping it maintains the feeling of a begins with a list of the of the townhouse developments studied, landscaping the feeling ofand a small village.it maintains developer designers, and then walks but through the use of short blocks, small village. • This small village feel is also reinforced though the context and what makes the hidden parking, narrower units, and lush • by This small village feel is also reinforced the architectural variety around landscaping it maintains the feeling of a exciting. by–the architectural variety around it because the olddevelopment brewery site small it –village. because the old brewery site of has been developed as a number • has Thisbeen smalldeveloped village feelasisaalso reinforced number different properties, this very high-of by the architectural variety around different properties, this very highdensity area feels like a handful of small it – because the old siteof small density area feels likebrewery a handful neighbourhoods. has been developed as a number of neighbourhoods. • The position of the development off of different properties, this very high• all The position of the off ofof main streets hasdevelopment created a sense density feels like a handful of small all main area streets created a sense of insulation, but ithas is still well-connected

P2 P2

P2

29

P2

Summarizes the size and density of

Olde York Village the development.

Pkwy

Don

Don

w Ave Bayvie

w Ave Bayvie

P1

w Ave Bayvie

r St Rive

r St Rive

r St Rive

P1 P1

• •

with a 4th basement floor for parking. Each unit has a front step and a patio, either over the garage at the rear or at the front of the development.

P2

P3

P3

• High quality, familiar architecture • Clever use of grade change • Successful creation of a small neighbourhood feel

SITE PHOTOGRAPHS Five photographs from different parts of the development illustrate the points made in the writeup. The locations where the photographs were taken are indicated in the axonometric view. P2: The front doors of all 33 units face doors a narrow P2: The front of all pedestrian street (a mews) 33 units face a narrow which is generously pedestrian street (a landmews) scaped. which is generously landP2: The front doors of all scaped. 33 units face a narrow pedestrian street (a mews) which is generously land-

11


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on

The Thirty Case Studies

N

page # Development Name

January

14 Forsythe Street

33.7

1980

Oakville

3

5,950 m2

20

16 Port Credit Village

44.1

1998

Mississauga

3

44,800 m2

185

18 Stonecroft Residences

51.7

2009

Burlington

3

3,290 m2

17

20 393 Main Street

66.1

n/a

Toronto

2

2,270 m2

15

22 Upper East Side

89.8

1999

Toronto

2-3

7,460 m2

67

24 Castle Hill

99.3

1990

Toronto

3

9,067 m2

90

26 Annex Lane

122.0

2002

Toronto

4

1,970 m2

24

28 Olde York Village

126.2

2001

Toronto

3

2,615 m2

33

30 Copperfield Townhouses

89.8

1978

Toronto

3

7,795 m2

70

32 Wyldewyn Village

122.9

n/a

Richmond Hill

3

23,120 m2

284

34 The Central

302.2

2002

Toronto

3

7,080 m2

214

36 Hydro Block

97.0

1978

Toronto

4

9,700 m2

94

38 David B. Archer Co-op

111.0

1970s

Toronto

2-7

3,425 m2

38

40 Rivertowne

151.9

2002

Toronto

3-4

27,590 m2

419

42 The Amalfi

89.1

2005

Vaughan

4

11,230 m2

100

12


of er mb Nu

eA rea Sit

He

igh

t( st

ore

Un

ys)

Ty p nt lop ve De

n tio Lo

ca

of ar Ye

me

ns Co

(u/ ity ns De

its

e

on cti tru

) ha

rm Bu

ild

ing

Fo

N

page # Development Name

January

44 The Loretto

92.8

2007

Toronto

6

4,960 m2

46

46 Herkimer Apartments

130.8

2010

Hamilton

4

1,760 m2

23

48 The Phoebe

55.5

2006

Toronto

6-7

6,845 m2

38

50 Oakville Town Square

101.5

1998

Oakville

4

5,120 m2

52

52 Henley Gardens

140.5

1991

Toronto

7

17,290 m2

243

54 Broadview Lofts

213.4

2006

Toronto

3-7

8,625 m2

184

56 The Renaissance

218.8

2008

Richmond Hill

7

4,755 m2

104

58 20 Niagara Street

259.4

1998

Toronto

6

850 m2

22

60 Market Square

273.8

1984

Toronto

8

11,175 m2

306

62 Ideal Lofts

517.1

2002

Toronto

9

1,315 m2

68

64 Spencer’s Landing

178.6

2001

Burlington

3-14

7,000 m2

125

66 Chicago Condos

574.4

2010

Mississauga

35

8,425 m2

484

68 Radio City

829.8

2007

Toronto

30

5,085 m2

422

70 One Six Nine Lofts

927.9

2006

Toronto

11

495 m2

46

1,379.8

2004

Toronto

36

3,705 m2

511

72 18 Yorkville

13


Forsythe Street Town of Oakville

Developer

-

10m

8m

Architect

10m

2m 8.5m

6m 4m

30.5m

Forsythe Ave.

Lakeshore Rd.

P3

The Forsythe Street development leverages topography and distinctive architecture to contribute attractive high density row housing to this historic residential neighbourhood adjacent to 16 Mile Creek Harbour.

30 m

P

CONTEXT Situated just west of Oakville Creek in Downtown Oakville, overlooking the Harbour where the creek meets Lake Ontario. • Located south of Lakeshore Road West - a vibrant retail and entertainment destination for the downtown - and forms the eastern edge of an established residential neighbourhood composed of detached and row housing, with connections to nearby Tannery Park, and Shipyard Park. • The area is well served by bus transit routes along Lakeshore Blvd and local streets. Most day-to-day needs are within a short walk, and schools and community centres are also nearby.

P2

t. et S urn

B

P1 A

r Fo e

P

th

sy

ion

t Sec

e. Av P5

P4 9m / 3 st

m

P

ol

ish

Ch . St

. n St

am

Civic Park

St

illi

nS t

Ki

ng

St

St

Na vy

W

W at er

St

erso And

ho re

Rd

Jo h

Shipyard Park

La

ke s

Lakeshore Park

Fo r

Ch

ho

lm

th

eS t

Forsythe Street

St

Bu

rn

et St

ris

sy

Tannery Park

St

nS t

on

so

14

de r

ils

An

W

INNOVATIVE SITE PLANNING • The development takes advantage of its sloped site to locate garages on a lower level at the rear of the property. • Above the garages, terraces provide a view out to the harbour. • Two discreetly located driveways on Forsythe Street minimize disruptions in the street wall, while providing access to a rear laneway connecting to the unit garages.


Forsythe Street

Town of Oakville

1

33.7 u/ha 5,950 m2 20

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE • A variable pattern of dormers and roof planes brings visual interest to the streetscape and reflects the style of many of the houses in the neighbourhood. • A high garden wall provides a transition from the public sidewalk to the private front yards, with multiple large openings to maximize sunlight penetration and ensure good visual architectural interest. • The one storey frontage along Forsythe allows plenty of space for the canopy of the tall street trees to flourish. STRENGTHS • Sensitive Site Planning • Distinctive architecture • High-quality materials

P1 P1: The three storey building setback allows tall street trees to flourish, while a garden wall provides a privacy. P2: The good relationship between built form, landscaping and street trees provides an attractive streetscape. P3, P4, P5: Access to underground garages via a laneway, takes advantage of a change in topography.

P2

P4

P3

P5 15


Port Credit Village City of Mississauga

10m

9m

Developer

Fram Building Company

4m

14.5m

7.6m

6.5m

9.8m

3.6m 2m

23m

25m

Compass Way

Lakeshore Rd E

Architect

Giannone Petricone Associates Landscape Architect

Baker Turner Inc

9m 2m

9m

2m 9m

31m

St Lawrence Dr.

P3

Lake side

y a W

St La wr en ce

ss

Dr .

a

p

m

o

nB

C

P1

Sectio

Dr.

P2

Se

Lakes

Dr .

hore

~9m / 3 st

ctio

P4

Rd. E

St La wr en ce

~9m / 3 st

nA

P5

The Port Credit Village development has become a vibrant part of this mixed-use, transit-oriented town centre, contributing a range of housing, retail and waterfront parkland to this intensifying community on the shores of Lake Ontario, adjacent to a commuter rail station that provides convenient access to downtown Toronto. CONTEXT The development is situated on the south side of Lakeshore Boulevard, on the shores of Lake Ontario in south Mississauga, a suburban municipality about 20 minutes west of Toronto. The project reclaims the former St Lawrence Starch factory site that once divided the East and West Villages of Port Credit community and blocked waterfront access. As part of the redevelopment, the Villages and public waterfront have been reconnected via a new main street, Street Lawrence Drive, that connects directly to the waterfront. Burnet Park

Lion’s Hall and Park

Ro s

ew oo

dA ve

Port Credit Village

Elm wo o

r sid eD

Po r

tS tE

ce

Dr

Dr ce St La wr en

Way pass

Com

aw re n

e

Dr

W at er

St

St L

len

W ay m

rio

An ne St

16

ce

Co

ta

He

aw re n

pa ss

La

ro n

St L

ry Ln rewe

Hu

Old B

ke sh o

re

Rd

E

dA ve S

The development is a convenient West Don Landsfive- to tenminute walk from the Port Credit GO Station, providing commuter rail service to downtown Toronto and other destinations within the Lakeshore Rdwithin and Greater Toronto Area. Densities Forsythe St surrounding the development generally Forsythe St support public transit use, including some high- and mid-rise building stock from the 1960s and 1970s. To the north of the station, residential areas are primarily low density, single-family neighbourhoods.

Tall Oaks Park

SITE PLANNING The development extends and connects a grid pattern of streets that is typical to the historic areas of Port Credit, but relatively unique within the larger city of Mississauga. This structure is well-suited to intensification, as it disperses additional traffic over a wide network of streets.


Port Credit Village City of Mississauga

• The street network supports a mix of grade-related housing, including street-fronting townhomes designed to fit with the wider low-rise neighbourhood, as well as live-work townhomes that address and enliven the pedestrian-oriented streetscape on Lakeshore Boulevard.

2

41.1 u/ha 44,800 m2 185

• A new main street has been created by extending a major north-south corridor (Hurontario Street) directly to a new public waterfront park, and shared with a later phase development on the west, that includes condo apartment buildings, gathering space and market area defined by public plazas, restaurants and other small-scale retail shops and office spaces. • Most parking is provided in underground garages, allowing a higher density of street-related housing at grade. A drop in grade allows terraces above the parking spaces. On the east side of the site, as well as the block behind Lakeshore Boulevard, surface parking is provided behind the townhomes, accessed via discreetly located driveways.

P1 P1, P2: The development includes an attractive mix of semi-detached and row housing.

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE Great care and attention has been paid to the quality and variety of architectural forms, adding visual appeal and interest to the streetscape by breaking down the scale of the long rows of housing. An array of complimentary materials give each unit a unique identity while maintaining a cohesive look. STRENGTHS • I nfill of a large former industrial site to reconnect the city to the waterfront •M  ixed use development including livework units and retail •C  lever treatment of parking in centralized underground areas •H  igh-quality, attractive architecture

P3: The development includes new public waterfront parkland. P4: Three storey work-live units with retail at grade enliven the streetscape on Lakeshore Boulevard.

P2

P5: Grade changes keep parking out of view.

P4

P5 P3

P5 17


6m

Stonecroft Residences 3.5m 7.5m 3.5m 1.5m

Town of Burlington

10m

6m

9m

1.8m

5m 1.8m

16m

23.6m

Maria St.

Pearl St.

10m

10m

10m

6m

Developer

Passport Homes

Architect 3.5m 7.5m 3.5m 1.5m

6m

1.8m

9m

5m 1.8m

16m

23.6m

Maria St.

Pearl St.

2.7m 10m

-

2.7m

15.4m

Landscape Architect

Stonecroft alley

10m

-

10m

Stonecroft Residences applies a sensitive approach to intensification, redeveloping three large lots to contribute well scaled townhomes to this residential neighbourhood in downtown Burlington.

t. ine S

l Caro

P4

2.7m 10m

50 m

2.7m

15.4m

Stonecroft alley

l ar Pe . St on B

Secti

P1 P5 on C

Secti

P . ia St Mar

~ 12m / 4 st

P3

P2

on

cti

Se A

CONTEXT Located in the midst of an established low-rise residential neighbourhood in downtown Burlington, the area includes a mixture of pre-war, post-war and more contemporary detached and semi-detached homes reflecting a range of styles. The development is within a short walk to a range of schools, shopping and other amenities downtown, including Brant Street, the City’s mixed-use shopping main street. Townhome units wrap the corner from Pearl Street to Maria Street, addressing Lions Park on the opposite side of the intersection.

nt

Burnet Park

Cr es ce

M

th

a

Em

er

al

d

ar

St

Stonecroft St e in ro l Ca

St ar M

be th

ia

iza

Pe a

rl

St

St

Jo

18

St

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an

m

Br

St

Ja

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ry Ln rewe

Old B

Lions Park

El

A GOOD FIT West Don Lands The Stonecroft was built on two adjoining lots previously occupied by two homes. As such, the development represents an example of Rd intensification within an Lakeshore Forsythe St neighbourhood. In this case, established Forsythe St the close proximity to shopping, parks, schools and transit creates a strong rationale for higher density housing. The design deploys a number of strategies to ensure the scale and character of this development fits well with its neighbours. These include: • A mansard roof profile reduces the perceived height of this three storey development to relate more closely with the two-storey detached homes on Pearl Street. • Generous front yard garden setbacks and street trees contribute to the street frontage.


Stonecroft Residences

Town of Burlington

3

51.7 u/ha 3,290 m2 17

• On the west side of the site, towns front onto a pedestrian walkway, to be expanded and shared in the future with additional townhomes • Parking and service access for the Stonecroft is directed to integrated garages accessed via a mid-block laneway, from Maria Street. • Each unit includes a second floor terrace located above the garage, as well as a rooftop terrace. • End units face the park and Maria Street to fully engage the neighbourhood. DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE The development reinterprets the colonial style to suit the heritage context of the prewar housing in this neighbourhood. Elements of the exterior facade design include:

P1 P1: A private mews creates an elegant way to access parking and provides additional private space in the form of terraces.

• Primary use of red brick and building stone • stone sills and lintels • wood trim bay windows and porches • large casement windows

STRENGTHS • Sensitive infill • Quality materials • Creative design of the mid-block laneway

P2: The development consists of two facing rows of townhomes, shielding parking from the main street and providing quiet front entries. Corner units face the public park.

P2

P3: Details such as stonework, iron railings, and flower boxes make the development appealing.

P4

P4: Front doors open at ground level alongside parking garages, keeping the small neighbourhood feel intact. P5: Private outdoor space is provided at a variety of levels.

P3

P5 19


393 Main Street

2.5m 10m 5m 1.8m 1.8 22m

6m

Doncaster Ave.

City of Toronto

14m

3.8m 5.5m

14m

Developer

-

6m

6m

Architect 2.5m 10m 5m 1.8m 1.8 22m

3.8m 5.5m

6m

3m 2m

9m

Doncaster Ave.

2m 26m

John Cowle Architects 14m 6m

10m

Landscape Architect

Main St.

-

Situated just north of Danforth Village in Toronto, 393 Main Street uses very traditional form and design to intensify an old neighbourhood in an unobtrusive way. The townhome form, traditional brick façade, and private lane parking all address the neighbourhood and corner appropriately and mask the density the development brings to the community.

6m

10m

14m

6m B

2m 26m

n

9m

ct

io

3m 2m

Se

Main St. Main P5

St.

P P1 P2

st er

Av e

P3

nc a

P4

17 m

~ 9m / 3 st

Do

P

393 Main Street

20

Sect

ion A

CONTEXT • 393 Main Street is located in the Woodbine neighbourhood of Toronto, just north of Danforth Village on Toronto’s east end. • The development is very well served by transit and transportation, sitting on the corner of two bus routes, one with a direct connection to the subway. • The surrounding neighbourhood is primarily low-rise, detached or semidetached homes. • The two main roads intersecting at the development, Main Street and Doncaster Avenue, are both lined with a mixture of low-rise commercial and residential buildings. • Secord Community Centre and Secord Elementary are located two blocks to the east. DENSITY IN THE LAYOUT As there are very few higher density developments in the area, any intensification needs to be moderated to fit the context. • The development uses traditional townhome form, employing narrower lots and taller units to increase density. The use of a row house layout rather than semi-detached towns also contributes to intensification.


393 Main Street City of Toronto

5

66.1 u/ha 2,270 m2 15

• A private lane in the back allows for private yards as well as a paved area, used for parking and play space for children. TRADITIONAL HOUSE FORM • In order to keep with the character of the surrounding neighbourhood, the development emulates the brick façade and row house form of neighbouring properties. • Pitched roofs on the front face of the buildings help to mask increased height. • The ground floor is slightly elevated, allowing for usable basements as well as additional privacy from the street. • Large front gardens keep with the character of the neighbourhood, and provide a bit of a buffer from the busy main streets.

P1 P1: Traditional forms and materials make 393 Main Street a good fit with its context.

STRENGTHS • Clever layout masks additional density • Architecture keeps the traditional house form of the neighbourhood • Large front and rear gardens provide outdoor space and privacy for residents

P2: The development is very well served by transit, located at the intersection of two major bus routes. P3: Rear gardens and a full third storey provide generous private space for residents.

P2

P4: A private lane at the rear of the development provides a paved surface for parking or play.

P4

P3

P5: The row house form and rear lane blend in well with the established fabric of the community.

P5 21


Upper East Side City of Toronto

10.5m

9m

10.5m

9m

1.4m 7.6m 2.7m 1.3m 1.3m 1.4m 14.3m 7.6m 2.7m 1.3m 1.3m Macphail Ave. 14.3m

Developer

Context (Cohen & Alter Developments)

3m 5.5m 6.8m 3m 5.5m 6.8m

Architect

Lane

Macphail Ave.

Wallman, Clewes, Bergman Architects

Lane

9m 9m

6m

4m

3.7m 13.5m 2.3m 3.7m 13.5m 22.5m 2.3m

Pape Ave. 22.5m

Landscape Architect

6m

4m

8.2m

3m

9m

3.3m 2.6m 9m 3.3m 2m25.1m 2.6m 2m

8.2m

3m

Corban and Goode Landscape Architects and Urbanists

25.1m Mortimer Ave.

Pape Ave.

P

Mortimer Ave.

P3

on C

Secti

er

m

rti

Mo e. Av

P

P

P2

on

cti B

m

~ 10.5m / 3.5 st

. ve il A ha

cp

Ma

Se

P5

Se

80

P4 P1 A ction

Pape

Ave.

e od Av

o Westw

Upper East Side

CONTEXT The Upper East Side is located at the intersection of Pape and Mortimer Avenues, in the Borough of East York, Toronto. Pape Avenue is a busy mixed-use main street composed of two- and three-storey buildings with ground floor storefronts and apartments above. Mortimer Avenue is a central spine of the residential neighbourhood that surrounds the development, composed of post-war detached and semi-detached Burnet Park West Lands bungalows and 2 Don storey homes. On the west side of the site, the development faces the back of Centennial College of Applied Arts and Technology, a small satellite campus Lakeshore Rd building of aForsythe post-secondary institution. St

Ave Pape

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mon

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Centennial College of Applied Arts and Tech

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King

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w Ave Carla

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A GOOD FIT The scale and massing of this rowhouse development has been tailored to address both the residential fabric adjacent to Mortimer Avenue, as well as the urban streetscape on Pape Avenue. Three storey live-work units with a flat roof and small front garden setback front onto Pape Avenue, aligning with similarly scaled adjacent blocks. A small public square addresses the busy corner. Within the development, three-and-a-half storey units have a peaked-roof profile at the third storey to reduce the perceived height and massing and allow more sunlight to reach the internal streets. Old B

w Ave Carla

imer

Mort

22

The Upper East Side reinterprets the English Georgian rowhouse style to create a contemporary and high-quality extension of the existing urban residential neighbourhood. Careful attention to scale, character and detailing creates an attractive and comfortable pedestrian experience throughout this high density development.

n Fulto

Ave

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Upper East Side City of Toronto

7

89.8 u/ha 7,460 m2 67

PARKING & CIRCULATION Surface and enclosed garage parking is provided at the rear of each unit, accessed via a laneway. The rear of each unit also accommodates a large terrace, raised a half-storey above grade which aligns with the main storey of each unit, and ensures the parking space below does not obstruct the view. DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE The Upper East Side development successfully applies the Georgian style to a contemporary urban context. Each residential unit includes a small but essential front garden and iron gate to establish a public/private boundary on the internal street, and a well-detailed and pronounced entry door and bay window. Units are three-and-a-half storeys in height, with large windows, concrete sills, Juliette balconies and brick cladding. The peaked roof form accommodates two units under one roof peak, which echoes the semi-detached housing that surrounds the site. This roof pattern is regularly interrupted by flat-roof units, adding variety and visual interest along the street wall.

P1 P1: A pronounced entry door, bay window, garden and gate reflect a contemporary interpretation of the London Georgian style. P2,P3: A variable pattern of roof profiles combined with street trees enhances the views along the internal streets within the project. P4: Individual parking spaces are provided to the rear of each unit, accessed by a private lane.

P2

P5: A three storey flat roof profile aligns with the adjacent street walls on Pape Ave.

STRENGTHS • High quality, context sensitive design • Continues the urban street-grid pattern • Distinctive architecture • A modern twist on classic architecture makes the development timeless and contemporary

P4

P3

P5 23


Castle Hill City of Toronto

12m

12m

11m

Developer

The Goldman Group

2m 2.3m 2.7m

2.3m 2m

9m 23m

5.6m 5.6m

Architect

21.5m

Gabor + Popper Architects

2.7m

Walmer Rd.

Spadina Rd.

12m

Landscape Architect

5m 3m

6.5m

3m

Conceived as an alternative to highrise development, Castle Hill is a prime example of low-rise, high-end intensification. The design of the 0.9 ha site creates a prestigious address for itself by siting luxury townhomes in the midst of parkland at the base of one of Toronto’s most iconic buildings. Narrow units, terraced to deal with the grade change, conceal high density behind high style.

2.8m 20.3m

Ke nd al Av e.

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B

Davenport Rd.

Daven

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P3

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P2 130

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Casa Loma

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ina R Spad

City of Toronto Archives

ve nell A

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George Brown College of Applied Arts and Technology

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phe

Mac

Ave

Castle Hill 24

nt St

Dupo

CONTEXT • Castle Hill is situated at the base of Casa Loma, at the intersection of Spadina Rd and Davenport Rd. • The site was formerly a Sealtest dairy plant. • To the east is George Brown College, Casa Loma Campus, and west of the development is the campus of the City of Toronto Archives. • The greater neighbourhood is made up primarilyBurnet of lowto mid-rise commercial Park buildings, as well as one newer mid-rise residential building to the west. • The site is bordered on the south by an unpaved parking lot used by Casa Loma Lakeshore Rd visitors,Forsythe and the railroad tracks. St QUALITY ARCHITECTURE • The development is comprised of terraced townhomes fronting both the adjacent main streets and a central green space. • Terracing allows for narrow units to have a greater feeling of separation; with the exception of the row along Davenport Rd, no two are at the same elevation. • Private lanes allow for individual parking garages that do not front the public street, as well as multiple outdoor patios for each unit.


Castle Hill City of Toronto

11 • The townhomes feature high-quality, luxury finishes that recall traditional townhome developments in Europe. Investment in quality building materials and design has kept the development in good repair, and kept resale values high since project completion.

99.3 u/ha 9,067 m2 90

ALTERNATIVE TO HIGH-RISE • The design of Castle Hill was realized as part of a design competition, after the City and the Ontario Municipal Board rejected several high-rise proposals. • The design is intended to maintain a high level of density while delivering a development that was sensitive in both scale and form to Casa Loma. • While not in a form that is obviously “transit supportive”, these luxury homes are well served by several modes of transit and provide densities which contribute to a transit supportive neighbourhood. LUSH AND LUXURIOUS • Castle Hill features generous public and private landscaping along all public streets, along with public sidewalks and park space, indicating a clear ‘front door’. • The combination of lush green landscaping and high-end finishes is reminiscent of Casa Loma, which can be seen from most of the development. • All the units in the development back onto private lanes allowing for private garages below each unit, keeping parking to the rear and front doors facing onto the sidewalk and public street. • A wide green space along Spadina Rd helps to buffer residents from the noise of traffic and pedestrians while maintaining front doors facing onto the street.

P1 P1: A terraced layout and narrow units provide a traditional feel, and allow for a vibrant public realm. P2: The architectural style and generous public realm reflect the character of Casa Loma, as visible from the development. P3: Private lanes allow for below-unit parking and multiple terraces for each unit.

P2

P4: Townhomes front each public street in the development.

STRENGTHS • High quality architecture and finishings • Green “front door” • Density delivered within high-design

P4

P3

P5: A wide green space on Spadina Road buffers front doors from the noise and eyes of traffic and pedestrians.

P5 25


12m 9m

Annex Lane

3m 2m

City of Toronto

14m

4m

4m

27m

Spadina Ave. 12m

Developer

12m

Exeter Development

9m 3m

3m 2m

14m

4m

3m

Architect

-

8.6m

4m

Annex Lane

ve hur A

e Art

27m

Princ

Spadina Ave.

Landscape Architect

-

12m

3m

3m

Nestled in the heart of Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood, Annex Lane is a great example of how a low-rise building on a small site can contribute density to a neighbourhood. The development utilizes high-quality design along with attention to detail to create a comfortable and familiar living environment in the midst of a bustling urban neighbourhood.

8.6m

Annex Lane 40

m

P4

on B

Secti

P1

~ 12m / 4 st

P5

P3

dina Spa

. Ave

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Annex Lane n Huro St

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Bloo

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26

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CONTEXT • Annex Lane is located in the Annex neighbourhood of Toronto, adjacent to Spadina subway station and one block north of Bloor Street West, one of the busiest and most diverse urban streets in the city. • Buildings in the neighbourhood vary dramatically from the 2-3 storey detached homes in the surrounding blocks, to the mid-rise residential Burnet Park buildings along Spadina Road to the north, to the high-rise apartment and condominium towers fronting onto Bloor Street. • The properties on either side Lakeshore Rd of the Forsythe St to a second development are home subway entrance (to the south) and the Toronto Public Library, Spadina Road branch (to the north).

University of Toronto

W

MAKING THE MOST OF A SMALL SITE Because of the scale of the surrounding buildings, proximity to transit and the intense real estate pressure in this area, this site is well suited to medium- to high-density. Density is accommodated on this small (0.2 ha) site in a number of clever ways: • Units are stacked on top of private garage parking, providing much-desired private access parking without dedicating any surface area to it.


Annex Lane City of Toronto

14 • The units are arranged as two rows of townhomes along a lane which allows for shared access as well as a more intimate neighbourhood feel. • Three storey residential units allow for large unit sizes without increasing the overall built footprint. • Private open space is provided at a number of different levels: ground level and first-floor balcony for some, and private rooftop terraces for each unit ATTENTION TO DETAIL • Annex Lane has sidestepped some of the usual pit falls of high-intensity residential development by paying close attention to detail, both in design and maintenance. • The buildings are finished with highquality, modern materials that still feel familiar. This includes the stone facing and iron balustrades. • Accessories such as lighting are, if not identical for every unit, in the same character and of the same high-quality. • The small common landscape elements are well-maintained, and finishing touches such as the same flowers in each window box, as well as flower baskets masking utility meters, give the development the feeling of a well-loved, well-maintained neighbourhood.

122.0 u/ha 1,970 m2 24

P1 P1: The overall feel of Annex Lane is cozy, reminiscent of a traditional village street.

STRENGTHS • High quality materials • Smart treatment of a small site • Good attention to detail

P2: The development consists of two facing rows of townhomes, shielding parking from the main street and providing quiet front entries. P3: Details such as stonework, iron railings, and flower boxes make the development appealing.

P2

P4: Front doors open at ground level alongside parking garages, keeping the small neighbourhood feel intact.

P4

P3

P5: Private outdoor space is provided at a variety of levels.

P5 27


Olde York Village City of Toronto

9m

Developer

Inaugural Source Homes

2m

5m

2m

3m

2m

Architect

du Toit Architects Limited

2m

5m

9m

9m

Old Primrose Lane

Old Trillium Lane

~ 9m / 3 st

P1

P P5

P

80 m

Sec

tion

P2

B

Br ew e

ry

W as c

La ne

an a

Av e.

P

Ol d

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Olde York Village

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Old B

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r St

w Ave Bayvie

Rive ix Ln

Raffe

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Humane Society

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28

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E St

du Toit Allsopp Hillier Tucked away behind the main streets, Olde York Village uses the building traditions of old Toronto to intensify the neighbourhood in a familiar way. High-quality materials, the village feel created by the building layout, and the clever treatment of parking all work together to make Olde York Village a beautiful precedent as the neighbourhood around it enters a period of renewal.

P4

P3

Landscape Architect

West Don Lands

CONTEXT • Olde York Village is situated in the Corktown neighbourhood of Toronto at the intersection of King Street E and Queen Street E, just west of the Don Valley, and just east of River Street. • The development faces the rear lane of the row houses lining River Street. • Building forms in the neighbourhood vary, from the 2-3 storey row houses along River Street to the 4-6 storey lofts built on Burnet Park Old Brewery site, to the highthe adjacent rise community of Regent Park. The area is also abutted by various commercial uses. • The Don Valley is just to the east. Lakeshore Rd • The neighbourhood is currently in flux - a Forsythe St large commercial property to the north is being converted to townhomes, and nearby Regent Park is being converted to mixed-income, mixed-density neighbourhoods, transforming the composition of the area. FAMILIAR ARCHITECTURE • The development takes the form of 4 rows of townhomes, arranged facing each other along a mews – a small pedestrian street. • The buildings are 3 residential stories, with a 4th basement floor for parking. • Each unit has a front stoop and a patio, either over the garage at the rear or at the front of the development.


Olde York Village City of Toronto

16 •

Articulation of the façade creates interest and keeps the development from feeling like a flat slab. The use of red brick and the garden landscaping in the mews creates a small-scale, comfortable feeling place.

126.2 u/ha 2,615 m2 33

CLEVER USE OF GRADE CHANGE The perceived height of the development is minimized by leveraging this sloping site. • Because the development is built at the edge of the river valley, underground garage parking is provided under each unit, accessible by private lane. • This allows the development to retain three residential floors above the parking without increasing height. It also allows for at-grade front doors. A VILLAGE FEEL Olde York Village is among the densest of the townhome developments studied, but through the use of short blocks, hidden parking, narrower units, and lush landscaping it maintains the feeling of a small village. • The small village feel is reinforced by the architectural variety around it – because the old brewery site has been developed as a number of different properties, this very high-density area feels like a handful of small neighbourhoods. • The position of the development off all main streets has created a sense of insulation, but it remains sufficiently connected to the rest of the city to not feel isolated. • The low-rise nature of the development, the organization around two mews streets, and the proximity of the front doors has led to a very tight-knit community. The homeowners association regularly organizes events such as talent shows and pot-luck dinners, and even has a Facebook group for residents to connect and share photos and stories.

P1 P2: Attention to detail in the landscape, layout and materials give Olde York Village a traditional neighbourhood feel. P2: The front doors of all 33 units face a narrow pedestrian street (a mews) which is generously landscaped. P3: Access to the development is via a private lane, behind the main street (River St). Parking is below grade, built into the hill.

P2

P4

STRENGTHS • High quality, familiar architecture • Clever use of grade change • Successful creation of a small neighbourhood feel

P4: Each unit has a front stoop and a front garden facing the mews, allowing for personalization and community interaction. P5: Private outdoor space takes the form of a back patio, above the private garage entries at the rear of each row of townhomes.

P3

P5 29


Copperfield Townhomes 8.4m

7m 21.7m

6.3m

City of Toronto Massey St.

Developer

-

Architect

Quadrangle 8m

9.2m 27.3m

10.1m 8.4m

Shank St.

6.3m

7m 21.7m

Massey St.

45

The Copperfield development achieves an elegant design solution on this narrow urban block. Four separate buildings accommodate 70 townhomes on a tight urban site (.78 ha), framed around an intimately designed landscaped courtyard. Perception of density is mitigated by good architectural detailing and well-designed transitions between private yards and public sidewalks and pathways.

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8m

9.2m 27.3m

10.1m

Shank St.

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CONTEXT Copperfield is situated between King and Queen Streets in a residential neighbourhood in the west side of downtown Toronto, in close proximity to Trinity Bellwoods Park (three blocks north), and Stanley Park (four blocks east). Although busy urban streetscapes anchor the north and south edges of this neighbourhood, the Copperfield development fronts onto quiet residential streets, and is adjacent to similarly scaled two- and three-storey townhome and semi-detached homes. Burnet Park

. St

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Centre for Addiction and Mental Health

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30

St

Copperfield

Shaw

k St

Shan

King

St Massey Harris Park

Douro St

iff St

Cann

EFFICIENT SITE PLANNING Copperfield has been skillfully designed to fit on a narrow urban block. By locating parking Rd coverage is underground, higherLakeshore density site Forsythe St possible. Through an efficient arrangement and design of the buildings, townhomes front onto all four edges of the block, consistent with other housing in the neighbourhood. Although the resulting courtyard within the block is necessarily modest in size, careful design of its landscaping and access points creates an elegant and intimate space.


Copperfield Townhomes City of Toronto

8

89.8 u/ha 7,795 m2 70

DISTINGUISHING THE PUBLIC AND PRIVATE REALMS Skillful design of the transition between private front yards, and the central courtyard and public sidewalks allow this high density development to feel comfortable and spacious. •

Steps and gated front yards clearly demarcate the transition to the public realm. Elevated balconies provide a separation from pedestrians using the adjacent pathways leading to the central courtyard. Good landscape design of the courtyard ensures that it contributes positively as an amenity to the development.

P1 P1: Varied roof planes add visual interest to the street frontage while a pattern of bay windows gives provides a comfortable scale.

STRENGTHS • Well-designed transitions between public and private realms • Efficient site design to achieve high density. • High quality design and materials have kept the development in good repair through many decades.

P2: Gates and steps define a transition from the public sidewalk to the private front yards. P3: Good landscaping and visual connections to balconies above make these pathways more inviting, despite their narrow dimension.

P2

P4: Parking is provided underground, allowing the remainder of the site to be dedicated to a landscaped amenity courtyard.

P4

P3

P5: The development as a whole showcases houseform design, using peaked roofs and stacked units to disguise density.

P5 31


Wyldewyn Village Town of Richmond Hill

Developer

Genesis Homes

11m

9.3m 20m 40.3m

12.8m

Architect

-

Weldrick Rd E.

8m

45.1m 65.9m

Church St. S.

Landscape Architect 9.3m 20m 40.3m

12.8m

8m

-

45.1m 65.9m

Weldrick Rd E.

Church St. S.

Located in central Richmond Hill, Wyldewyn Village provides an excellent model for bringing density to a suburban setting. Traditional architectural forms and generous use of green space keep with the character of the surrounding neighbourhood, and placement of the parking underground ensures that streets are places for people, not for cars and driveways.

Ct

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cti

Se

ck ldri We

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~9m / 3 st

ton bar Dun

A P2

P

P

~12m / 4 st

P1 P4

~9m / 3 st

~9m / 3 st

P5

P

~9m / 3 st

~9m / 3 st

11m

P3

Church St

S

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Nightstar D

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Wyldewyn Village

CONTEXT • Wyldewyn Village is located in central Richmond Hill, just east of Yonge Street and south of Major MacKenzie E., an ideal location for residential intensification. • The neighbourhood to the east of the development is primarily low-rise, single family detached homes, with a handful of low-rise apartment residential Burnet Park developments. West Don Lands • To the west are Yonge Street and a number of low-rise, strip mall style retail outlets. Lakeshore Rd • The development is well served by St transit,Forsythe situated at the intersection of two major bus routes (York Region Transit and GO Bus) and less than 2 kilometers away from the Richmond Hill GO Train station. • The David Dunlop Observatory and the associated open space are just a few blocks to the east, and directly accessible by foot or bicycle. • A ravine and path system connects to the development to the south and east.

Churc

Chu

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32

S h St


Wyldewyn Village Town of Richmond Hill

15 CAREFUL SITE PLANNING • In order to achieve higher densities, the development uses a more traditional road layout and has populated it with small blocks of stacked townhomes. • Each row of townhomes is doubled (sharing a rear wall) allowing for even more units on the same amount of land. To access each unit, sidewalks wrap around the entire perimeter of the development. • Parking is concentrated in underground structures, keeping front gardens and the front faces of the townhomes intact. • Wide sidewalks connect all of the units, and pedestrian paths link to city and regional trails, as well as the ravine system adjacent to the development. GENEROUS LANDSCAPING • Wide landscaped setbacks create a comfortable and familiar setting for the development, and buffer units from the busy main streets of Church Street and Weldrick Rd. • Each row of houses has garden space in the front, making the sidewalk experience feel more park-like. Two larger semi-public park spaces are provided for resident recreation. • Row houses on the perimeter blocks also have garden terraces for additional private open space. STRENGTHS • Site planning allows for a much higher level of density while keeping streets and gardens open for people • Generous open space is provided for each unit • The development is well connected the natural and built amenities nearby

122.8 u/ha 23,120 m2 284

P1 P1: Stacked townhouses are arranged in houseform to minimize the visual impact of density from the street. P2: One larger park space for residents includes a playground and flower garden. P3: Parking is located in underground structures, accessed from lanes between housing rows.

P2

P4: Generous green spaces buffer the units from the main street.

P4

P3

P5: Balconies and patios add to the private open space provided for residents.

P5 33


The Central City of Toronto

Developer

Noble Star Properties

Architect 3.6m 4m

14.3m

4m

2.3m

4.5m

2m

Architects Alliance-

4.5m

28.3m

Jarvis St.

Situated in Toronto’s east end, the Central brings residential density to a transitional downtown neighbourhood. The compact site plan, moderate height, and generous landscaping create a comfortable, affordable alternative to high-rise living in the downtown. ~ 12m / 4 st

~ 12m / 4 st

P2

P1

P4 P3

A

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~ 12m / 4 st

ion

t Sec

vis St

m

P

P5

90

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Car

St

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The Central St

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Hom

The National Ballet School

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Jarvi

al St Mutu

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Allan Gardens

t on S Carlt

34

CONTEXT • The Central is located in the Allan Gardens neighbourhood of Toronto’s downtown, at the intersection of two main shopping and transit streets – Jarvis Street and Carlton Street • Buildings along Jarvis Street are a mixture of mid- to high-rise residential, commercial, and institutional uses. East of the development, the built form changes to a low-rise detached and semi-detached residential neighbourhood with small commercial Burnet Park uses along the main street. The Central West Don Lands sits at the transition between these two contexts. • Directly to the east of the development Rd is Lakeshore a medium-sized city parkette, Forsythe St accessible by foot. Just to the south is Forsythe St Allan Gardens, a large city park with many amenities. COMPACT DEVELOPMENT One of the recognized successes of the development is that it provides attainable townhome living to those who might otherwise only be able to afford a high-rise unit. The primary way it has achieved this is through site planning. • The units are arranged around a series of mews streets with one larger emergency access road, providing a more intimate feel and superseding the need for wider vehicular roads. • Parking is located underground, accessible from Jarvis Street.


The Central City of Toronto

25 •

Each of the 4-storey towns are stacked in three levels – a lower level studio unit, a ground floor unit, and a unit comprising the two upper floors and rooftop terrace, allowing for more dwellings in the same amount of space. The relatively modest size of the units, along with the relatively modest neighbourhood in which they are set, allows for good quality housing at a much more attainable price for young professionals and others in the middle income group.

MAKING THE MOST OF CONTEXT Part of what makes the Central work is that it is in the right place for residential intensification. • The development is close to a number of different transit options, as well as cycling and driving routes, to allow for a greater choice in transportation for residents. • The proximity to public open space, particularly Allan Gardens with its large green spaces and dog run areas, gives residents an option for outdoor recreation without providing it on-site. • The development is also very close to a number of commercial and retail centres, allowing for diverse shopping, entertainment and cultural opportunities.

302.2 u/ha 7,080 m2 214

P1 P1: Moderate scale, efficient site planning, and generous landscaping create a good setting for density. P2: Townhomes are organized around a central mews rather than a vehicular street, allowing for a more intimate neighbourhood feel as well as giving more area for development.

STRENGTHS • Compact site planning • Attainable housing • Good use of public amenities

P2

P3: Lower level units are accessed through front gardens. P4: The Central provides a townhome alternative in a neighbourhood dominated by high-rise developments.

P4

P3

P5: Parking is concentrated in an underground garage, and is accessed from Jarvis Street.

P5 35


Hydro Block City of Toronto

Developer

Ontario Housing Corporation

Architect

Diamond and Myers 9m

6.4m 20.9m

5.5m

Henry St.

St

45 m

P3

Be ve rle yS t

Cecil

The Hydro Block applies an innovative design approach to achieve ground related housing that fits well into the surrounding context and achieves densities normally associated with a high-rise form. CONTEXT Hydro Block is located in the College & Spadina area of Downtown Toronto. The surrounding neighbourhood features an urban block structure that includes rear laneways for parking and service.

P1

win

80 m

Elm

nr y

on A

• T he neighbourhood includes a mix of semi-detached and row housing, as well as some walk-up apartments. •A  range of amenities is within a short walk of the site, including: schools, theatres, restaurants, and shopping. It is also close to transit, including Queen’s Park subway station. Victoria • T he Hydro Block includes one 4-storey Memorial apartment building,Park 2-storey townhome Burnet Park of low-rise complexes, as well as a range West Don Lands semi-detached houses.

P4

St

~ 9m / 3 st

Bald

Secti

He

~ 14m / 5 st

P

P2

St

P5

St

Elgin Barrow

St

t ick S

36

Hydro Block

tr St Pa

t win S

Bald

St

urst

Bath

eet

y Str

t rley S

Beve

Elm

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C

University Health Network Princess Margaret Hospital

Old B

ul St

McCa

Henr

t ecil S

HISTORY Arena Complex In the late 1960s Ontario Hydro began Lakeshore Rd to purchase houses on the block with Forsythe St Forsythe St the intention to demolish and build a transformer station to serve the surrounding downtown neighbourhoods. By 1970 protests and growing political clout by communitybased groups convinced the public agency not to proceed. Instead, when ownership and responsibility for the land was transferred to the Ontario Housing Corporation, dilapidated housing on Henry Street was demolished to make way for higher density community housing. In 1978, the development was complete, accommodating stacked Trillium College townhome and apartment housing on Baldwin Street and Henry St, as well as refurbished detached homes along Beverley Street.


Hydro Block

City of Toronto

SITE PLANNING The Hydro Block adopts a similar massing and relationship to the street as the housing on neighbouring blocks. •The east half of the block retains the pre-war detached and semi-detached housing. The west half of the block has been redeveloped to accommodate stacked apartment units, framed around a central corridor, and separated from the west properties by a service laneway. •C  onvenience retail has been accommodated at grade on Baldwin Street to support the existing mix of restaurants and shops. •Underground parking is also accessed via Baldwin Street, and accommodated beneath the common courtyard.

10

97.0 u/ha 9,700 m2 94

INNOVATIVE DESIGN APPROACH The Hydro Block uses an innovative approach to achieve ground related housing at densities normally associated with a high-rise form. The building on Henry Street accommodates a range of unit types and sizes by stacking them on top of one another. • T wo-storey units designed for families and larger households occupy the first two floors. Each unit has its own street address, front door and porch fronting onto Henry Street. These units also have a private rear yard facing the common courtyard and playground area for the complex. •O  n the upper levels, smaller apartments (primarily home to singles or couples) are accessed by an enclosed and glazed corridor on the third floor, overlooking Henry Street below. • T his design approach achieves a density in excess of 90 units/hectare in a building form that fits well in the context of a low-rise neighbourhood. • T his form along with the traditional brick facade makes the development fit in its context.

P1 P1: The materiality and colour of the brick facade relates to the surrounding context. P2, P3: Stairs lead down to garden level units, and up to ground level units. P4: Retail uses are provided at grade, and access ramp leads to below grade parking garage.

P2

P5: View of the courtyard and rear yards of residential units.

P4

STRENGTHS •S  ensitive site planning • Innovative approach to density •C  ommunity sensitive form and materials

P3

P5 37


10m

David B. Archer Co-op P

10m

City of Toronto

4m

8m

3.5m 8m 3.5m 2m 2m

3m 2.5m

27.5m

19m

George St. S

Jenoves Pl.

33m

Developer

Toronto Community Housing

10m

Architect

Jerome Markson

P 10m

4m

8m

10.5m 3m 5m

3.5m 8m 3.5m 2m 2m

3m 2.5m

27.5m

George St. S

19m

18.5m

Jenoves Pl.

The Esplanade

The David B. Archer Co-op was developed in the first phase of the Street Lawrence neighbourhood development and remains a successful model to support mixed-use, mixed income urban communities.

Frede ri tS t. E

ck St

10.5m 3m 5m

Fro n

18.5m

The Esplanade

HISTORICAL CONTEXT The development is one of a series constructed in the Street Lawrence neighbourhood during the 1970s as part of an urban reform movement to shape a new approach to the provision of affordable and mixed income housing. Today, the Street Lawrence area is home to approximately 25,000 people, living in 12 housing co-ops, half a dozen public housing complexes and more than three dozen condominium buildings.

~10m / 3 st

~ 22m / 7 st

90

m

P

P2 Sect

Se

sp

S

eE

e St.

lan

ad e

ion B

Th

Georg

ct

ion

A

P2

P2

King

The David B. Archer Co-op was completed in the first phase of the development, along with three other co-ops and a public housing building. Each the original blocks Burnetof Park was designed to reflect Toronto’s West Don Lands 19th century grid street plan and features brick townhomes and higher density apartment buildings that resemble the streetscape of Lakeshore Rd the old town of York.

St E E t St Fron

Princ

t ess S

David B. Archer Co-op

ry Ln rewe

i

Old B

er Fred

SITE PLANNING The David B. Archer Co-op includes a 7 storey building fronting onto Crombie Park, stepping down to two 5 storey buildings on the corners of the block. nade

Espla

t rne S

rbou

r She

David Crombie Park

Lowe

The

St Lawrence Market

Lowe r Jar t vis S

38

Forsythe St

Forsythe St

• T wo- and three-storey townhomes are located on the side streets, and within the block. •A  driveway is located under the five storey block, providing service and parking access to an interior street network within the block.


David B. Archer Co-op City of Toronto

13

111.0 u/ha 3,425 m2 38

•C  rombie Park is a six-block long public park designed to serve as a central focus for the community, complete with pedestrian pathways, fountains, playgrounds, basketball courts and ash trees that line the sidewalk. • T he Co-op’s seven-storey building includes retail space on the ground floor to animate the Esplanade and Park. A COMMUNITY SUPPORTIVE APPROACH TO DENSITY In contrast to the ‘tower-in-the-park’ example of modern planning, the Street Lawrence model has achieved a strong sense of community, supported by a carefully designed urban structure that incorporates a high level of density while providing a diversity of housing forms, community amenities, and pedestrian connections. • T he approach locates height, density and retail uses to support the street life of The Esplanade and provide ‘eyes on the park’ for Crombie Park. • L ower density townhomes front onto quiet side streets. By locating all parking underground, townhomes are provided with ample space for front and rear yards, as well as generous street trees.

P1 P1, P2: Three storey townhouses provide distinctive elements to add visual interest on the street. P3: Third floor balconies provide eyes on the street while generous street trees provide an attractive canopy of shade. P4: Access to underground parking below the townhomes is located within the interior of the block.

P2

STRENGTHS •S  ite planning respects context •A  variety of unit types •H  igh-quality design and materials

P5: Laneways provide service access within the block.

P4

P3

P5 39


Rivertowne City of Toronto

Developer

15m

4m 2m 2.5m

4m 2m 2.5m

5m

2m

6m

Don Mount Court Development Corporation; Intracorp Development Inc.; Marion-Hill Development Corporation; Toronto Community Housing

4m 2m

19m

Architect

Munroe St.

Montgomery Sisam; Kearns Mancini Landscape Architect

Janet Rosenberg + Associates Bra

odv

iew

Du 65 m nd as St .E

P1

Ham

Av e.

ilto

Ki

nt yr e

nS t.

P4

Operated by Toronto Community Housing (TCHC) and located on the site previously occupied by Don Mount Court, Rivertowne is Canada’s first community housing project to be redeveloped into a mixedincome community. The development, though large, downplays its density through the use of traditional building forms, connectivity to city streets, and high-quality landscape.

Ave

P3 P5

Don

Val ley

St . on

nro e

ps

Mu

St.

Pkw

y

ro St

Mun

das

Dun

St E

e w Av dvie

Broa

Rivertowne ilton Ham St

t oll S Carr

wy

Ave

lley Pk

ro St

Mun

Don Va

w Bayvie

e re Av

Kinty Kintyre Ave

ilton

Ham St

ro St

Mun

s Ave Davie

40

pson

Thom

St

P

Car roll St.

om

P

Th

Se

cti

on

A

P2

CONTEXT •R  ivertowne (formerly Don Mount Court) is located just east of the Don Valley, between bustling Dundas Street East and Queen Street East. Broadview Ave is two blocks to the east. • T he location is extremely well served by transit, being within two to three blocks of three streetcar lines and one bus line, all connecting directly to the subway as well West Don Lands as back into downtown. Additionally, the Don Valley and the Don River trail system are just steps away. Lakeshore Rd • T he surrounding neighbourhood consists Forsythe St of primarily low-rise semi-detached homes, with a handful of low- to mid-rise commercial buildings fronting Dundas St E and Queen St E. Queen Street serves as a local main street for the area. • T he large high-rise Regent Park community housing development is located just across the river. Regent Park is also in transition into a mixed-income community. MIXED INCOMES The original TCHC development was home to 232 rent-geared-to-income units in a series of mid-rise “towers in the park”. When the towers were deemed uninhabitable in


Rivertowne City of Toronto

19 2002, a new plan came forward to bring the low income families back into the greater community. • T he resulting mix includes all 232 lowincome units and an additional 187 market-ownership condominiums. • T he introduction of market-ownership condominiums creates a mixture of residents, vital to a sustainable neighbourhood. • T he market-ownership condominiums keep the maintenance standard high for the neighbourhood. • T he market-ownership condominiums create good “attainable” housing for young professionals and other middle class residents. SENSITIVE LAYOUT •A  major downfall of affordable housing developments in the past has been the closure of city streets. Disconnection from the neighbourhood cuts residents off from emergency and support services, amenities, and casual passers-by. •R  edevelopment of Rivertowne has reconnected the city street grid, ensuring that the development connects back to the surrounding neighbourhood. •M  any of the new market-ownership condominium units are arranged around mews streets, small pedestrian-only streets, creating a much tighter village feel. Greater density can be achieved this way: units are arranged with privacy and access in mind, but with less room dedicated for roads. • T his dedication to density opened up additional land which has been added to an existing park to create a 2 acre community park.

151.9 u/ha 27,590 m2 419

P1 P1: Well-designed landscape and building details give a sense of address to each unit in the complex. P2: The extension of Munroe Street reconnects the development to the surrounding neighbourhood, allowing for through traffic once more.

P2

P3: Interesting landscape and public realm details give the development a high-value look.

STRENGTHS •A  true mixed-income community •S  ensitive layout and return to the city grid •H  igh-quality public realm

P4: Pedestrian mews streets provide a cozy setting for marketownership condominiums.

P4

P3

P5: Parking for the Munroe Street townhomes provides easy access, as well as a paved play area for neighbourhood children.

P5 41


The Amalfi

P5

City of Vaughan

12m

12m

Developer

Armour Heights Developments

6m

4m

14m

4m 3m 13m 2m 2m 2m

5m

23m

2m

Architect

5m 13m 2m

A.J. Tregebov, architect

35m

24m

Landscape Architect

Keele St.

Douglas W. Kerr & Associates Ltd. In an area known primarily for larger lot detached residential development, the Amalfi is a good example of sensitive residential intensification in a traditionally a low-density neighbourhood. Designed as an active adult lifestyle community, the development allows older adults to remain independent as they age, without leaving their community. Sensitive site planning and distinctive architectural style work together to create a building which is firmly rooted in the neighbourhood and which fully supports its residents.

m

11 0

m

Fieldgate Dr.

45

P3 P4

P1 P2

r.

Kee le tion

Sec

St.

~ 12m / 4 st

P

D ate ldg e i F

P5

Sec

tion

A

CONTEXT • The Amalfi is located in the Maple neighbourhood of Vaughan, in the middle of a large single-family detached residential community. • The development sits on the corner of Keele St and Fieldgate Ave, Keele St being a major transport and shopping street, and is not far from Rutherford Road and Major MacKenzie Drive, two Park major regional arterialBurnet roads. West Don Lands • The development is across the street from Frank Robson Park and Woodlot, Elgin Barrow Arenasystem Complexand its and backs onto the ravine paths and trails. Lakeshore Rd

B

Arnold

nt

Cresce

Forsythe St

The Amalfi

a Viv

t Keele S

Frank Robson Park

Ct

Fieldgate

Dr Dina Rd

42

Bartley Smith Greenway

ry Ln rewe

Old B

TRADITIONAL FORM Forsythe St A major challenge for any development that is the first to intensify in a lowdensity neighbourhood is to appropriately complement the surrounding neighbourhood fabric. Sometimes this can mean standing out, and sometimes this can mean blending in. The Amalfi does the latter. • The overall development takes the form of a traditional country house, with a main building and two “wings.” The College – it building is thereforeTrillium very familiar feels like just another house in the neighbourhood, only larger.


The Amalfi

City of Vaughan

6 •

The details on the building, including the cornices, multiple gables, front and side porticoes, and grand entry drive, reinforce the feeling of a home. Underground parking allows for more open space, creating a beautiful and welcoming semi-private formal garden behind the building, and allowing for generous green setbacks along the main streets. Visitor parking, drop-off, and residential parking are all accessed through a formal turn around and driveway which creates a sense of entry, and also preserves pedestrian access with a wide sidewalk leading directly from the street to the front door. The Amalfi does all this and provides 100 units on the same amount of land that holds just 10 homes on the adjacent block.

AGING IN PLACE • The Amalfi was conceived as an “adult lifestyle community,” a development geared toward older adults who are still independent but looking to downsize from their current home responsibilities, or simply want a closer network of neighbours. The development also has the advantage of being located in an old residential neighbourhood – it provides an alternative to people looking to downsize, without leaving the community they know and love. • Compact development is ideal for this kind of living, allowing a greater number of services to be provided to residents who would otherwise be too spread out to be served efficiently. • Amenities at the development include large well-appointed units, each with en suite laundry, a large landscaped garden courtyard, secure underground parking, exercise room, indoor swimming pool, and even a self-service car wash bay. The short walk to transit and good connections to open space provide even more value for residents or the development. STRENGTHS • Compact site planning • Large landscaped courtyard • Aging in place

89.1 u/ha 11,230 m2 100

P1 P1: The front of the development resembles a large manor house, with a portico and balconies. P2: A grand drive facilitates drop-off, visitor parking, and residential parking access. P3: The development backs onto a ravine, allowing direct access to the open space and trails at the ground floor level.

P2

P4: A large landscaped courtyard serves as a sort of private park for residents, a good place for sitting and walking, and beautiful to view from the units above.

P4

P3

P5: Along Keele Street the development is buffered by a wide landscaped strip, including small front gardens for grade-level units.

P5 43


9m

The Loretto

2m

8m

2m

12m

33m

Brunswick St.

City of Toronto

16m

24m

16m

Developer

Context

9m

Architect

architectsAlliance; Quadrangle 9m

2m

8m

2m

15m

12m

33m

Brunswick St.

Occupying the former home of the Loretto Abbey College School, The Loretto is a luxury condominium complex in Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood. The Loretto is a prime example of increased density, highend intensification in a well-established neighbourhood. Modern updates to the original building, the addition of townhome units at the back, and a lush landscape all make the development feel very modern, very expensive, and very much in character with the surrounding neighbourhood.

24m

16m

15m

P4 P2 ~ 16m / 5 st

P3

Br

un sw

P1

ic

k

Av e

P5

Bar

a Kend l Ave

ry L rewe

r Rd

Old B

Rd

e Walm

dina

Spa

The Loretto

e k Av

Ave land

How

dswic Brun

l Ave

a Kend

ton Ave

CONTEXT • The Loretto is located in the Annex neighbourhood of Toronto, in the middle of several blocks of low-rise, single family P5 detached homes. • The Annex is an old, affluent neighbourhood, but is also well-served by Victoria Memorial transit and is quite close to Bloor Street Park West and the University of Toronto. Park • To the east of theBurnet development mid-rise West Don Lands residential buildings line Spadina Road north of Bloor Street W. Elgin Barrow • Directly north of the development, Arena Complex another smaller Lakeshore former school Rd has been converted to condominium units in a Forsythe St Forsythe St similar high-end fashion. • Directly to the south of the development is a 1960s era mid-rise apartment building. n

ADAPTIVE RE-USE • The main building of the Loretto was once the Loretto Abbey College School, built in 1914 and closed in 2001. The current incarnation was completed in 2007. • Legally, the developer could have demolished the existing building and Trillium College constructed a mid-rise condominium complex of up to 100,000 square feet. By retaining the existing building, the developer was able to not only overcome

ve her A

Lowt

Dalto n Rd

urst

Bath St

44 Josepth Brant Memorial Hospital


The Loretto

City of Toronto

9 community resistance, but also to realize a price-per-square-foot much higher than the average for central Toronto. • On top of the financial benefits, the development has a distinct character and charm which fits with the surrounding neighbourhood and downplays the densities contained within. • Because of the delicate nature of the interior building materials, all units in the main building are single storey. To provide larger units, the development expanded to include 13 three storey townhome units at the rear. Additionally, some larger units have been created by the purchase and combination of multiple units through renovation. LUSH LANDSCAPING The other major strength is the well-designed and maintained landscape including the public streetscaping, the semi-private interior courtyard, and the private terraces, patios, and yards. • Along Brunswick Avenue, on the public street, the original grassy landscape has been enhanced with new seasonal planting beds around a large heritage black oak tree. • The interior courtyard boasts a lush, garden-like feel and contains a small sodded area, a public BBQ, and a pavilion-style gym and amenity building. • Each unit has a large private outdoor space including rooftop terraces, balconies, and at-grade patios. The 13 townhomes have rooftop terraces and private yards. STRENGTHS • Re-use of a historic building with ample character • Lush and well-maintained landscaping • A variety of unit sizes and forms

92.8 u/ha 4,960 m2 46

P1 P1: The original school façade and landscaping has been retained and upgraded to accommodate new residential uses. P2: A lush, green interior courtyard hosts communal amenities such as a lawn, BBQ, and gym pavilion. The pavilion also provides pedestrian access to underground parking for the development.

P2

P3: Large private balconies are provided for each unit in the original school building.

P4

P4: Vehicular access to underground parking is tucked into the south side of the existing school building, along the new fire access lane. P5: Three storey townhome units line the back fire access lane and front onto the interior landscaped courtyard.

P3

P5 45


6m

Herkimer Apartments 5.8m 10.5m 1.3m

3.4m 1.3m

22.3m

City of Hamilton

Herkimer St. 16m

16m

Developer

Core Urban Inc.

6m

Architect 5.8m 10.5m 1.3m

5m

3.4m 1.3m

1.8m

8m

2m

22.3m

23.2m

Herkimer St.

Bay St.

6.4m

Stewart & Witton

16m

5m

1.8m

8m

2m

Designed in 1914 and restored recently, the Herkimer Apartments remain an instructive case study in achieving higher density in an established residential neighbourhood.

6.4m

23.2m

Bay St.

CONTEXT The Herkimer Apartments are located at the intersection of Herkimer and Bay Streets near the foot of the Escarpment in the Durand neighbourhood of downtown Hamilton. This four-storey development was originally completed in 1914, and remains a rare example of the ‘New York’ style of apartments in the City of Hamilton. The Herkimer is situated near Durand Park, and is surrounded by a mixture of large two- and three-storey stately homes completed during the same period, as well as more recently developed post-war and contemporary mid-rise apartment buildings. A range of Victoria downtown amenities are available within a Memorial Park short walk.

40 m

P P3

P5 P4

P1

er

~ 16m / 4 st

m rki

He St tion

A

St S

P2 on

cti

Se

Sec

Bay

B

Burnet Park

n

ry L rewe

Rd

Old B

lton Ave W

dina

Char

Spa

Herkimer St

SITE PLANNING West Don Lands Although parking was not anticipated when Elgin Barrow the building was completed in 1914, parking Arena Complex has since been provided with a separate Lakeshore Rd one-storey groundForsythe levelStgarage accessed via Bay Street at the Strear of the site. The Forsythe garage fronts onto a shared laneway that accommodates parking for most adjacent properties on the block. As such, the laneway has allowed a range of historic properties to adapt to the transportation needs of contemporary apartment dwellers.

ne S tS

Durand Park Herk

DENSITY DISGUISED As a walk-up apartment building, the height of this 4 storey building relates well to its three-storey house form neighbours, while Trillium College accommodating high density on a narrow site.

St

urst

Bath

46

Mark

land

Park St

Bay S tS

Caro li

imer

St

St


Herkimer Apartments

City of Hamilton

• T he massing reflects a ‘dumb bell’ plan which maximizes the building footprint at both ends, with recesses indentations towards the centre. This approach pushes the building closer to the sidewalk at the edges, while providing a more generous front lawn and entry sequence towards the centre. • Instead of balconies, the building provides sunrooms for each unit. Additional basement level units have been accommodated by raising the ground floor and creating large window wells surrounding the base of the building.

17

130.8 u/ha 1,760 m2 23

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE The Herkimer was designed to appeal to Hamilton’s elite and features a range of high quality materials and architectural details. • T he brick façade is punctuated by large windows, terra cotta portico, lintels and trim. On the interior, hardwood doors, flooring and trim are provided throughout. •R  ecently, the building has undergone a comprehensive renovation and conversion to condominium units. Original finishes have been restored, and modern conveniences have been added. • T he building offers 23 large units on 5 floors (1 basement floor). These spacious apartments, averaging 1700 square feet, remain a rare find in the downtown.

STRENGTHS • Smart site planning • Heritage Building • High quality form and materials

P1 P1: Terra-cotta trim and portico create an attractive entrance and frontage onto Herkimer Street. P2: A prominent building cornice and juliette balconies address the intersection. P3: Classically detailed lintels, sills, balconies and trim add elegance to the facade.

P2

P4: Surface and garage parking is provided at the rear of the building. P5: The overall building height remains consistent with the neighbourhood.

P4

P3

P5 47


The Phoebe City of Toronto

Developer

21m

Diamante Development Corp.

12m

10m

10m

Architect

Burka Architects Inc. 2.6m

12m 17.4m

2.8m

4.3m 6m 3m 13.3m

Beverly St.

P2

Landscape Architect

Ferris + Associates Inc.

Phoebe St.

P3

St wer

Bul

tW nS

e Que

P m 80

P1

ho

So

y le

r ve Be

~ 12m / 4 st

~ 27m / 9 st

St

P4

St P5

io

n

A

~ 12m / 4 st

B

ct

n

io

ct

Se

St

Se

ebe

Pho

(PLACEHOLDER) Grange Park Beve t rley S

t an S Suliv

anie

h Step

St

CONTEXT • The Phoebe is situated in downtown Toronto, a half block removed from Queen Street, one of the city’s premier shopping streets. • Building forms in the neighbourhood change from two- to three-storey retail along Queen Street, to higher six- to seven-storey apartment buildings moving north along Beverly, and low-rise two- to three-storey residential townhomes north of Phoebe Street.Victoria Memorial Park • Grange Park, north of the site on Beverly Street, is a well-maintained, Burnet Park partially forested park. West Don Lands • A twenty four-storey rental apartment Elgin Barrow building to the northeast is the sole Arena Complex exception to the low- and medium-rise Rd building heights inLakeshore the vicinity. Forsythe St Forsythe St

VARIED ARCHITECTURE The development employs three distinct forms: • The Soho Building, fronting Soho Street, is a mid-rise, five storey building, with a classic red brick exterior. Floor to ceiling windows under arched steel beams enliven the façade. • The four-storey Phoebe building, a cleverly disguised house-form apartment building with light coloured brick and mansard Trillium College roofs, mirrors the residential heights of the neighbourhood to the north.

St John St

n St

Quee

ry Ln rewe

Soho

t ew S Renfr

Rd

Old B

t be S

Phoe

dina

Spa

The Phoebe

r St Pete

48

Composed of three separate buildings on a 0.6 ha site, The Phoebe provides an exceptional model for intensifying an existing residential area. The development elevates the quality of architecture in the neighbourhood, introduces lush new green space, employs a variety of high quality building materials, and utilizes a number of techniques for blending density into the existing neighbourhood.


The Phoebe

City of Toronto

4 • The Beverly building is a seven-storey condominium apartment building which in itself employs a variety of architectural styles: • The central portion is designed to reflect the industrial heritage of the area, with simple concrete walls and large windows, enhanced by angular overhangs. • The south side is clad in red brick, and employs moulded rounded brick pilasters, and recessed, triangular bay windows. • The red brick of the south side is counterbalanced on the north, where a shorter four-storey wing transitions to adjacent heritage buildings SKILLFUL TRANSITION • The development steps down from six and seven storeys at the south side, where these heights reflect the heights of existing mid-rise apartments, to four storeys at the north side of the development, integrating with the existing residential buildings. • It transitions in type from a larger, industrial apartment building form to a townhome style apartment, with individual entrances onto Phoebe Street, classic bay windows, and gabled roof ends. DENSITY DISGUISED Experience of density on the site is mitigated through several clever techniques: • House form apartments along Phoebe Street appear to the passerby, like a series of rowhouses. These units are actually the north side of an apartment building • The mass of the west side of the development is mitigated by a wide, treed setback from Soho Street. • Along the project’s east side, the mass of the Beverly building is broken up by the distinctive materials and styles of the three component parts. Recessed windows, planters and architectural detailing further reduce perception of building mass. STRENGTHS • High quality, varied architecture • Transition from mid-rise to low-rise • Density is well hidden from public view

55.5 u/ha 6,845 m2 38

P1 P1: The Beverly street building’s south side circular brick pilasters and recessed bay windows contrast sharply with the central portion’s cement facade. This attention to detail breaks up the building’s mass and creates an interesting streetwall. P2: Generous treed setbacks soften the presence of the six storey Soho building, and mitigate the pedestrian experience of density. The building steps down toward Phoebe Street.

P2

P4

P3: Vehicular access to underground parking is provided at the south side of the building. P4: A house-form apartment building along Phoebe Street feels like a much smaller a town house development.

P3

P5

P5: The north end of the Beverly building matches the heights of the existing homes to the north.

49


Oakville Town Square Town of Oakville

Developer 4.4m

4.4m

12.3m

13.4m 40.3m

12.3m

13.4m 40.3m

26.8m

Lakeshore Rd E. 26.8m

Green Brook Investments

Architect

Lakeshore Rd E.

SMV Architects Landscape Architect

Ferris + Associates, Inc. 4m

Ch ur ch

St .

4m

13.3m 65.9m

13.3m 65.9m

13.2m

Robinson St.

13.2m

Robinson St.

Dun

e St

.

Geo

Sectio

rge St.

nA

m

~ 12m / 4 st

30

P2

La ke s

ho

P

re

Rd

.E

.

P4 P1

P5

tion

B

Geo

St .

St .

Ro b

ins

on

rge St.

illi

am

St.

W

mas

~ 12m / 4 st

Tho

P3

Sec

Du

St

all

St

nn

nd

Ge

Ra

ge

St

St rch Ch u om

Ro bin

eR

Oakville Town Square

Ki ng

50

St

W

illi am

St

or St

La ke sh

Na vy

so nS t

St

dW

as

SITE PLANNING Burnet Park A significant achievement theLands WestofDon development is its integrated relationship with improvements to George Street Elgin Barrow Arena Complex to provide a pedestrian gateway to the Lakeshore Rd downtown from the adjacent residential Forsythe St neighbourhood. The design includes a Forsythe St number of characteristics: • Distinctive paving materials, street trees, stairs and light standards emphasize the importance of this gateway connection and its relationship to the Square. • A view corridor is established to the symbolic town square clock tower, located at the end of the gateway, addressing the square and the main street. College • The laneway itselfTrillium transitions between the lower grade level on Robinson Street to the main street. ry Ln rewe

Th

CONTEXT The Oakville Town Square residential development is located at the intersection of Robinson and George Streets in the heart of downtown Oakville. The development frames and supports the town square - a well-used public space that has become a focal point for the mixed-use main street and a venue for a range of events. The development also fronts onto Robinson Street, which plays a transitional role between the mixed-use developments associated with the downtown to the north, and the low-rise residential neighbourhood to the south. • The area includes a historic mix of early vernacular homes, nineteenth century lakeside cottages, turn of the century luxury homes and churches.

Old B

or

Oakville Town Square sensitively adds density and a mix of retail uses to support and enliven the centre of this historic downtown.

George Street Park


Oakville Town Square Town of Oakville

12 A GOOD FIT The development is a successful example of how to achieve higher density residential intensification within an established and historic urban neighbourhood. A number of design techniques have been deployed to ensure this large development fits into its context: •

The massing of the four storey buildings includes a one storey retail podium that frames the square and provides a transition to the predominantly low-rise retail main street. The podium also provides terraces that overlook the square, and ensures that sunlight reaches the open area, particularly along the pedestrian connection along George Street. The building height is further broken down through the articulation of peaked and sloped roofs on the upper storey, meant to reflect in part to the surrounding housing context. Terraces on the upper floors are setback, further breaking down the mass of the building ‘cap’. The solid wall is broken down even further through a mixture of materials and levels Underground public parking is provided below the development, with access stairs from the town square and an access driveway located away from the primary pedestrian areas, on Robinson Street.

STRENGTHS • Smart site planning • Innovative approach to density • A variety of materials and forms

101.5 u/ha 5,120 m2 52

P1 P1: A historic clock tower anchors the intersection of a pedestrian laneway with the public square and the main street. P2: The public square is framed by ground floor retail uses. P3: Grade-related residential units address Robinson Street.

P2

P4: The entry to the apartment building is accessed from Robinson Street.

P4

P3

P5: The height and massing of this large development has been scaled to transition from the mixed-use downtown to the adjacent low-rise residential neighbourhood.

P5 51


Henley Gardens City of Toronto

Developer

Intraurban Projects

Architect 4m 21m

Quadrangle

4m

Landscape Architect

29m

Ferris + Associates Inc.

Kingston Rd.

e Av rk Pa ia

~ 40m / 13 st

r to Vic

Anchoring the west end of the old main street Kingston Rd in Scarborough, Henley Gardens is a mixed-use residential complex that provides a variety of services and amenities to both residents and the neighbourhood. Lots of green open space, retention of ground floor retail, and sensitive design of a large site combine to make this a sought-after address in an established neighbourhood.

P4

P

P3 P2

5 10

~ 27m / 7 st

P5

m

P1

d

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P

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Lakeshore Rd

Forsythe St DESIGN Forsythe St

ry Ln rewe

Old B

SENSITIVE SITE • The development occupies two very large parcels, the western half being a large parking lot and low-rise strip style commercial development, and the eastern half comprising a mid-rise residential building with retail at grade and a large private park space. • The bulk of the mid-rise building is disguised through the use of a u-shaped building, turning the long side away from the main street. A series of step-backs Trillium College creates sculpted tops on the building, allowing for moderate, pedestrian-scale development along with mid-rise heights that support density. te Rd celet Cour

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Blan

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Henley Gardens Neil McNeil High School

d

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CONTEXT • Henley Gardens is located in the Birchcliff neighbourhood of Scarborough, in Toronto’s east end. • Kingston Road was formerly the city of Scarborough’s main shopping street, and along with Queen Street East still serves as a main street for shopping and transportation. Victoria • The surrounding neighbourhood is Memorial Park primarily low-rise detached and semidetached homes. Burnet Park • The development is close a number Westto Don Lands of public parks and not far from the Elgin Barrow Beach, Toronto’s only neighbourhood with Arena Complex unobstructed access to the lakeshore.

52 Josepth Brant


Henley Gardens City of Toronto

18 •

Location of residential parking underground opens up space for a very large, park-like, semi-private green space for residents’ use.

140.5 u/ha 17,290 m2

ADAPTABLE Part of the success of the development is that it is poised to change to keep up with market conditions: • Concentration of development on half of the site leaves the other half open for intensification as the market is ready to absorb new units. • Inclusion of retail at grade sets a good precedent as the block develops in the future. As the market and needs of individual retailers change, it is much easier to update and upgrade the façade of an existing retail use rather than convert or rebuild.

243

STRENGTHS • Sensitive site design • Large, lush semi-private green space • Adaptable over time

P1 P1: Up to six storeys of residential units sit above main street retail along Kingston Road. P2: The massing of the building is varied to mask the size and density of the development. P3: Access to private parking is provided within the large landscaped courtyard.

P2

P4: The eastern half of the development consists of a large parking lot and strip retail, ready for redevelopment when the market is right.

P4

P3

P5: The western half of the development is dominated by a large park-like semiprivate open space, ideal for dog walking, playing, etc.

P5 53


Broadview Lofts City of Toronto

Developer

Sorbara Development Corp.

Architect 14m

4.5m 3m 24.5m

3m

Turner Fleischer Architects

Broadview Ave.

13m 2m

21m

2m

~ 10m / 3 st

38m

Eastern Ave.

P3

~ 22m / 7 st

P

85 m

s Ea

P4

rn te

P1

e Av on B

Secti

pson

on A

Br oa dv

P2

Thom

Secti

iew

Av e

P5

St

St

Ave

Lewis

dview

E

CONTEXT • The Broadview Lofts are located at the southern end of Broadview Avenue in Toronto, just east of the Don Valley, just north of the Eastern Extension and the Gardiner Expressway, and just south of the established Queen Street East neighbourhood. • The development site is abutted on three sides by industrial/commercial or former industrial uses – auto dealerships to the south, former warehouses to the north and west. To the east,Burnet the development Park West Don Landswhich faces low-rise residential houses have been assembled for potential condominium development. • Queen Street East is just one block to the north. The street hasLakeshore long beenRd a local Forsythe St main street and isForsythe increasingly revitalizing St to house more and more destination and special retail, as well as new housing. er St Sault

Broa

n St

Quee

At the southern end of Broadview Avenue, the Broadview Lofts occupy a transitional area between industrial and residential areas, both physically and in character. The development creates a high-density, beautiful place to live in an area that may otherwise be difficult to develop for residential uses.

Old B

Broadview Lofts

r y Ln

rewe

ADAPTIVE RE-USE • The main building of the Broadview Lofts was originally a warehouse and factory for Rexall, constructed in 1914. In 2008 construction finished on the conversion to loft units. • Building additions on the top floors and the south face increase footage and unit numbers, and allow for floor-to-ceiling windows in many units.

e rn Av

Easte

ch ur

Ch St

d ark R ght P

Sunli

54


Broadview Lofts

City of Toronto

21

213.4 u/ha 8,625 m2 184

• By keeping the original building completely intact, the development has captured the industrial character and elevated it. This kind of development is highly desirable for both potential buyers and for those in the surrounding neighbourhood as there are no significant physical changes that would alter the character of the community. SOPHISTICATED PARKING SOLUTIONS • Because of the nature of the existing building, underground parking access was not located within the building itself, but via a small structure adjacent to the main building. • Visitor parking and pedestrian access to the underground parking is located under the southern addition to the original building, along with a large space for bicycle parking. • Rather than letting the parking ramp float in space, it has been treated as usable structure. The ramp/door shelter itself has a green roof, and extends to accommodate more guest parking. Fronting the parking entrance structure is a row of townhomes, each with their own under-unit parking. This ensures that the development maintains a front door to the public street and will continue to be attractive as the neighbourhood evolves.

P1 P1: A landscaped courtyard gives a sense of comfort as well as privacy to the industrial-style building. P2: The original warehouse building blends seamlessly with the new additions to the roof and south face. Floor-to-ceiling windows line the newest parts of the building.

P2

STRENGTHS • Re-use of an old building with lots of character • Highly desirable unit types • Clever integration of parking

P3: Low-rise townhomes keep a front door facing the public street, and back onto the entrance to the underground parking ramp.

P4

P4: The entry drive and structured parking entry are faced with townhomes and covered with a green roof. P5: The original entrance to the old warehouse building on Broadview Ave has been retained and updated.

P3

P5 55


The Renaissance Town of Richmond Hill

Developer

Tridel

Architect 5.1m 12.1m 8.3m 25.5m

Yonge St.

5.1m 12.1m 8.3m 25.5m

Burka

8.6m 7.4m 12m 28m

Yonge St.

8.6m 7.4m 12m 28m

Church St. E.

Church St. E.

w vie se Ro

The Renaissance fronts onto Yonge Street in Richmond Hill, and is a great example of a project that reintroduces density to an old downtown district. The self-described “boutique condo” development sensitively engages the old main street, employs highquality architecture and building materials, and is a model of sustainability as a LEED silver certified building.

P2

e Av n io

ct

Se

P3

A

P5

P

Lo e rn

P1

~ 14m / 4 st

P4

~ 26m / 8 st

~ 20m / 6 st

m 97

h St S Churc

e Av n

io

ct

Se B

e St Yong

d

l no

Ar es Cr

Elgin Barrow Arena Complex

enue e Av

nt

Trillium College

r y Ln

56

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v Rose

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St Yonge

The Renaissance

QUALITY DESIGN The development is much larger than any Lakeshore Rd context, but other building in its surrounding Forsythe St it employs a handful of techniques which Forsythe St make it blend in nearly seamlessly with the surrounding context: • The high-quality building materials reflect the traditional main street fabric, and ground floor retail contributes positively to the main street retail environment. • An elaborate series of step-backs and façade articulations make the building appear much shorter from street level. • The tallest section of the development is oriented perpendicular to Yonge Street, allowing the streetwall to have a variable height along the public street. Old B

St S

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ld Cr

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Chrurch

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CONTEXT • The Renaissance is located in old Richmond Hill, fronting onto Yonge Street, the city’s traditional main street strip. • Buildings along Yonge Street tend to be low-rise (two- to three-storey) commercial and mixed-use buildings. The neighbourhood to the east is low-rise single family detached residential. LionsisPark • The development well-served by transit and is close a number of major Burnetto Park transportationWest corridors. Don Lands


The Renaissance Town of Richmond Hill

22 •

The massing of the development is broken up into three distinct sections, with a mid-rise seven storey central building and two low-rise wings facing the public streets. A row of townhomes along the eastern edge of the development face similar scale development in the surrounding neighbourhood. Units in this building are large and wellappointed, and amenities such as a private health spa bring a bit of luxury to the old main street strip.

LEED SILVER CERTIFIED The Renaissance is recognized as a model of sustainable design and construction as a LEED silver certified building. Among the green practices found in the building are: • Sustainable materials and building practices help set a standard of environmental responsibility for new and infill building projects • Bicycle parking and proximity to transit encourage a more car-free lifestyle • As a redevelopment project, the Renaissance is a good example of infill and re-urbanization

218.8 u/ha 4,755 m2 104

P1

STRENGTHS • High quality architecture and design • Main street re-urbanization • LEED silver certified

P1: A series of step-backs reduce the impact of the eight-storey building height along Yonge Street. P2: The east face of the development employs a row of townhomes to front onto the existing low-rise neighbourhood. P3: Parking and drop-off access from Yonge Street is through the building.

P2

P4: A large interior courtyard allows for lobby drop-off and parking access while maintaining an intact retail street façade.

P4

P3

P5: Vehicular access to the development from the east side is via a private lane.

P5 57


20 Niagara Street City of Toronto

20m

20m

Developer

Context (Cohen & Alter Developments)

Architect 6.1m 7.6m 6.7m 6.1m 7.6m 6.7m 20.4m 20.4m

Niagara St. Niagara St.

20m

hur

Bat

James Floyd

Completed in 1998, 20 Niagara Street was a pioneer condominium development in the now-booming King and Bathurst neighbourhood of Toronto. The sensitive architecture and careful connection to the adjacent Victoria Park set a high standard which has rarely been surpassed in the area since its completion.

on gt lin

el W

Victoria Park Victoria Park

W St

P2

CONTEXT • 20 Niagara Street is located in the heart of the old warehouse district just east of Bathurst Street in downtown Toronto. • The overall neighbourhood is composed of a mix of Victorian-style semi-detached homes and mid-rise condominium and commercial buildings. • The development sits within Victoria Park, a medium-sized urban park, occupying the south west corner. • Today the neighbourhood Burnet Park is home to Don Lands such high-end West condo and mixed-use developments as the Thompson Hotel and ResidencesElgin justBarrow to the north of the Arena Complex park.

P4

ag

Ni St

n io

ct

A

Se B

~ 20m / 6 st

a ar tion

Sec

P1

P3

UPDATE MODEL

in Well

W

QUALITY ARCHITECTURE Forsythe St 20 Niagara Street set a standard of quality for mid-rise lofts in Toronto. • Large windows and articulated building faces make the building look much less imposing than it would if were a plain flat slab. • There are only 4 units per floor, and a handful of clever design solutions allow for direct elevator-to-suite access for each, increasing privacy and security. The layout also provides Trillium Collegefor large private balconies and terraces, and the loft condition allows for a great deal of customization inside. ry Ln rewe

St

Victoria Memorial Park

20 Niagara Street

t ara S

Niag

t Fron

58

St gton

Old B

urst Bath

g

in Well

Forsythe St

t nd S

Thompson Hotel and Residences

tW ton S

Lakeshore Rd

a Portl

t art S Stew

Landscape Architect

20m

t st S

P5

Wallman Clewes Bergman Architects (architectsAlliance)

St W


20 Niagara Street City of Toronto

23 •

Step-backs above the 6th floor mask some of the height of the building, preventing it from feeling imposing from the park below. Below-grade parking and the building’s front door are tucked into the façade on Niagara Street.

259.4 u/ha 850 m2 22

ADDRESSING THE PUBLIC REALM A major strength of the development is its placement adjacent to a public park and in part of a greater mixed-use neighbourhood. The development addresses the public park in a very sensitive, sophisticated way: • The ground level is elevated slightly (~1 m) to ensure privacy for both building residents and park-goers. • The light-coloured building materials are a good neutral background for the lush greens of the park. • Landscaping along the building face further helps park and building blend together. • Preservation of mature trees hides parts of the building from view, and gives the impression that the development belongs in the park.

P1 STRENGTHS • High-quality, standard-setting architecture • Desirable building layout • Sensitive interaction with the public park

P1: Lots of windows, a generous step-back, and setbacks at the ground floor mask the height and density of 20 Niagara. P2: The layout and design of 20 Niagara makes it feel right at home in the middle of Victoria Square, a very urban public park. P3: Below-grade parking, pedestrian access, and the blank façade created by interior firewalls all face Niagara Street, providing easy access and allowing for the more interesting façades to face the park.

P2

P4

P4: Large private outdoor spaces, such as balconies, are provided for each unit. P5: The continuous balconies of half of the units face the adjacent property.

P3

P5 59


24m

Market Square City of Toronto

3m 7m 9m 3m 9m 6m 30.5m

Front St.

27m

24m

Developer

24m

Architect 3m 7m 9m 3m 9m 6m

27m

Jerome Markson Architects.

5m 13m 5m 3m

30.5m

23m

Front St.

Church St.

24m

Market Square is a successful example of the courtyard building typology, sensitively scaled to fit on a large urban block and within a historic district of downtown Toronto. The development achieves a level of density normally associated with tall buildings, without compromising the quality of the public realm.

rv Ja is

5m 13m 5m 3m

. St

23m

70

t. E gS Kin

m ~ 28m / 9 st

Church St.

P4

CONTEXT Market Square is located on Front Street at Church Street in the heart of the historic Street Lawrence Market neighbourhood in downtown Toronto. The site is directly across the street from the historic Street Lawrence Market, east of the Gooderham Flatiron building and south of Street James Cathedral. The development is well served by transit streetcars, and is a short walk to the Yonge subway. There are a wide range of amenities and attractions within a short Burnet Park Centre, walk, including: the Air Canada West Don Lands the Rogers Centre, the Street Lawrence Centre for the Arts, the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, several major hotels and the ferry to the Toronto Islands. Lakeshore Rd

P2

P . St

85

E

5m

A

12

tion

tS t. Fr on

ch ur

Ch

P5

Sec

m

P3

35

m

P1

Saint James Park

Market Square orne

Colb

St

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in Well Berczy Park

60

St E

St Lawrence Market

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Old B

St E

t ge S

Toronto Sculpture Garden

s St

King

Geor

t St

Jarvi

t ch S Chur

Cour

Forsythe St

SITE PLANNING Forsythe St Market Square is a classic example of the courtyard building typology, sensitively applied to this large urban block. The development is composed of two buildings, separated from one another by a welldesigned pedestrian laneway aligned to preserve a view corridor with Street James Cathedral to the north. Additional site planning characteristics include: •

The efficiency of the courtyard form is most apparent on large blocks such as this, where site coverage can be nademaximized by developing towards the la p s E The edges of the block. In this case, a density threshold normally associated with towers much taller than seven


Market Square City of Toronto

stories is achieved here, with room left over for a generously sized courtyard. All parking has been located underground, allowing the ground level to be dedicated to courtyard and retail space and supporting a more active pedestrian realm and streetscape. Perhaps one of the most successful moves is the creation of an intimately scaled pedestrian mews laneway aligned with Street James Cathedral, and animated with retail spaces and by the Toronto Sculpture Garden.

24

273.8 u/ha 11,175 m2 306

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE The development is large, covering one and a half original city blocks. In comparison, surrounding buildings are smaller, occupying only portions of a block. The design employs a number of techniques to break down the apparent mass of the buildings and establish relationships with the surrounding built fabric and public realm. For instance: •

A cornice line on the seventh floor aligns with the height of adjacent buildings, (the Gooderham building eaves) above which the brick colour changes on the penthouse floor. Articulation of the facade by using bay windows, vertical pillars, and differing window sizes breaks down the mass and add visual interest The colonnade at ground level contributes a number of benefits to the overall design: it provides a generous amenity to the pedestrian realm; lightens the mass of the building; and architecturally emphasizes the distinctive role of the ground floor.

STRENGTHS • Sophisticated site planning • Innovative approach to density

P1 P1: A series of vertical elements help to break down the mass of the facade, including sunroom bays, brick piers, and chimneys.

P3

P2

P4

P2: A carefully designed pedestrian laneway maintains an important view corridor to Street James Cathedral. P3: A ground floor colonnade is successfully animated by retail uses, and aligned with a generously landscaped streetscape. P4: Parking and service access via Church Street. P5: A strong cornice, and change in material and colour aligns the building with adjacent built form.

P5 61


9m

Ideal Lofts

5m

20m

City of Toronto

5m

5m

30m

College St. 33m

33m

Developer

22m

Context

9m

Architect

architectsAlliance 5m

20m

5m

5m

6.5m 8m 5m 1.5m 21m

30m

College St.

Markham St.

33m 22m

The Ideal Lofts is a good example of how to maximize density while still achieving context sensitive design on a mid-rise urban street. The height, setbacks and materials have been carefully designed to reflect the surrounding context while new ground floor retail contributes activity to this vibrant urban street.

P4

6.5m 8m 5m ham 1.5m St. 21m

Mark

P

P3

~ 33m / 9 st

Se

ctio

nB

Markham St.

CONTEXT Ideal Lofts is situated on the south side of College Street, just west of Bathurst Street in downtown Toronto. The site is on the eastern boundary of Little Italy, a vibrant centre of culture, entertainment and dining. Building forms on this stretch of College Street range from two to four storeys on the north side, to higher six to seven storey apartment buildings on the south side. Quiet residential streets north and south Lions of College Street arePark primarily composed Burnetand Parksemi-detached of narrow detached Lands in height. housing, two to West threeDon storeys

P5

35 m

Secti

on A

Co

lle

ge

St.

~ 16m / 5 st

P1

P2

King Edward Public School

ry L rewe

Old B

ARCHITECTURE Lakeshore Rd This nine storeyForsythe building occupies a very St St ha). Although the small urban Forsythe site (.13 overall height of this infill building is at least two storeys higher than its neighbours on adjacent blocks, clever use of building stepbacks at the sixth and eighth floors as well as changes in material successfully align this building with its neighbours, reinforcing a six storey street wall on the south side of College street. n

ge St

Colle

t cott S

Lippin

Bath urst St

ge Pl Colle

ham St

rston

e Palm Ave

62

Mark

Ideal Lofts

• T he ground floor of the building is clad in grey building stone and concrete while the upper floors are clad in red brick punctuated by large windows and Juliette balconies. The red brick of the upper floors is consistent with the


Ideal Lofts

City of Toronto

26

517.1 u/ha 1,315 m2 68

general character of the area and its many heritage buildings, while the grey stone and concrete on the ground level successfully distinguishes the retail ground floor uses and their relationship to the more varied architecture of the streetscape. • T he red brick stops at the 7th floor, aligned with adjacent buildings, while the top two floors feel much lighter, articulated by a setback and use of clear glass walls. SKILLFUL TRANSITION Although the building fronts onto a busy stretch of College Street, terraces are deployed on the south face of the building to achieve a successful step-down transition to the 2-3 storey housing found on Markham Street, to the rear of the development. • T he primary entrance to the building is located on Markham Street, with street trees and plantings to improve the relationship to the lush and quiet streetscape. •A  ccess to the building’s underground parking garage is via an entrance adjacent to the east-west laneway running along the south face of the building.

P1 P1: The ground floor along College Street has a great deal of transparency, a higher ceiling height, and different materials to support retail uses. P2: Building stepbacks allow this mid-rise development to fit in well with its neighbours. P3: The entrance to the residences is located on Markham Street.

P2

P4: Parking and service access is located adjacent to the rear laneway.

STRENGTHS •H  igh quality, varied architecture • T ransition from mid-rise to low-rise •C  ompact urban infill

P4

P3

P5: The building steps down to align with the lowrise residential character of Markham Street.

P5 63


9m

Spencer’s Landing

9.5m 2m 18.2m 4m 1.5m

Town of Burlington

35.2m

North Shore Blvd. E

Developer

39m

39m

The Molinaro Group

33m

Architect

KNY Architects Inc

9m

9.5m 2m 18.2m 4m 1.5m

Landscape Architect

Seferian Design Group

8.5m 18.6m 7m 2.5m 2.5m 39.1m

35.2m

North Shore Blvd. E

Maple Ave.

39m

Situated on Lake Ontario in Burlington, Spencer’s Landing is a good example of sensitive high-rise intensification in an in-demand neighbourhood. The development uses high-quality materials and a mixture of building forms to deliver large luxury units in a way that reinforces, rather than detracts from, the surrounding neighbourhood.

33m P5

t. wS lvie

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B

8.5m 18.6m 7m 2.5m 2.5m 39.1m

Se

~39m

Bel

Maple Ave.

e

l ap

M e. Av

P3

P2

P4

~9m

P1

st

St n gi

A

El

n

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Br oc

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th

. Ea Blvd

Se

Nor

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Av e

CONTEXT •S  pencer’s Landing is located in the Downtown Waterfront area of Burlington at the intersection of Maple Ave and North Shore Blvd, walking distance to the downtown shopping and entertainment area. • T he development is directly across the street from Spencer Smith Park and the Victoria adjacent recreation and cultural uses at Memorial Discovery Landing. Park • T he developmentBurnet is onePark in a strip of highrise residential buildings fronting Lake West Don Lands Ontario. The neighbourhood behind this Elgin Barrow high-rise strip is low-rise single family Arena Complex residential homes. Lakeshore Rd

Rd La

Av e

ry L rewe

Be llv

ple

ke sh ore

Ma

A PUBLIC Very often in the development of highrise residential communities where large lots are available, the building is set back a large distance from the street in the name of creating privacy for the residents. Unfortunately this usually serves to cut off residents from the surrounding community, and make the street feel empty for those passing by. • T he layout and design of Spencer’s Landing engages the surrounding Trillium College community by bringing the buildings right to the street on both sides. • T he lobby of the tower building opens onto Maple Ave, which is easily accessed by pedestrians. Old B

iew

St

Forsythe St FACEForsythe St

n

Spencer’s Landing

No r

th

Lakeshore Rd

Sh

or

e

Bl

vd

E

Spencer Smith Park

64

Josepth Brant Memorial Hospital


Spencer’s Landing Town of Burlington

20 • T he lakefront situation of the development is further taken advantage of through use of townhomes along North Shore Blvd. The townhomes address the street at pedestrian scale, and enliven this busy intersection by putting “eyes on the street.” •P  arking is accommodated underground, with a small visitors’ lot in the interior courtyard. LUXURY BY DESIGN •S  pencer’s Landing is a development of large, well-appointed units, and this high design is also reflected on the exterior of the building. •H  igh-quality brick, large glazed windows, and articulated façades all give the building a feeling of quality, and reflect the style of the surrounding low-rise residential neighbourhood. •V  arying materials help to break up the vertical faces of the tower building, helping to disguise the massing. • L arge patios and terraces ensure a generous amount of outdoor space for each unit. • T he townhome units feature both a rooftop terrace and entertaining room and a finished basement, and have both front and back gardens. The overall design of the townhomes fits with the surrounding context

178.6 u/ha 7,000 m2 125

P1 P1: The different building forms, townhome and high-rise, are tied together by the use of similar materials. P2: By bringing the building face to the street on both sides, the development engages the surrounding community.

STRENGTHS •H  igh quality architecture and design •N  eighbourhood-sensitive site planning • L arge luxury units

P3: Townhome units feature façade articulation and rear gardens, making them feel more like lowdensity housing.

P2

P4: Underground parking and services are accessed through an interior courtyard.

P4

P3

P5: Varying finishes help to break up the vertical mass of the tower building, making it feel less imposing.

P5 65


Chicago Condos City of Mississauga

Developer

Daniels Corporation

22m

9m 31m

9m 22mConfederation 31m

Architect

-

Pkwy

Confederation Pkwy

8.6m

16m 28.6m

Chicago Condos invests in high quality architectural detailing and materials to ensure this high density development sets a high standard within an emerging urban community.

4m

Prince Dr. 16m of Wales 4m

8.6m

W

g vin Li

28.6m

Ar

Rd

Prince of Wales Dr.

Dr

urn

ts

Dr

P3

inc

y

w

Pk

fW ale s

P5

eo

n

io at er ed nf

Co

~ 22m / 7 st

10 0

m

~125m / 38 st

Ra thb

CONTEXT The Chicago Condominium development is located at the intersection of Prince of Wales Drive and Confederation Parkway, in the City Centre area of Mississauga. It is the sixth condominium development by this builder on a master planned site adjacent to City Hall that is intended to become a pedestrian friendly urban neighbourhood at the centre of Mississauga’s emerging downtown. A new 1.2 hectare community park is the centrepiece of this 9 hectare master-planned community. Frontage on the park is shared Burnet Park by new residential condominiums, the Living West Don Lands Arts Centre (a large performance venue), and City Hall. The Chicago Condos development provides pedestrian walkway connections via an adjacent siteLakeshore to the new Rdpark, as well as other walkable amenities, including: Forsythe St St the Art Gallery ofForsythe Mississauga, Square One Shopping The Living Centre, a central library, and Arts Centre transit.

n

io Pr in ce

of

Dr

fW ale s

Dr

Chicago Condominiums er

Pr

inc

es

nf ed

so

Co

at

io

n

Pk

wy

66

SITE PLANNING The development includes three building forms, each relating to adjacent streetscape conditions. •A  slender 35 storey point tower is positioned to the west edge of the site, with good separation distance from other existing and planned towers, ensuring that minimal shadows will be cast, particularly on the nearby community park. •A  seven storey podium fronts onto Confederation Parkway, providing a good building height-to-street width ratio (approximately 1:2) on this 40m right of way, to ensure a comfortable pedestrian experience. ry Ln

ts

es

rewe

Ar

W al

Old B

g vin Li

Dr

Ra

thb

urn

Rd

W

Se

ct

B

io

P4

ct

n

P1

Se

A

P

Pr

P2


Chicago Condos City of Mississauga

27 • T hree storey townhomes front onto quiet side streets, as well as a pedestrian mews that will be shared by townhomes developed in a future phase. The townhomes will animate and provide a degree of safety for the quiet mews. The mews connect across multiple blocks to the new community park.

574.4 u/ha 8,425 m2 484

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE The development incorporates a range of high quality materials and forms to add visual interest to the streetscape, make the podium feel more human scale, and add an attractive tower to the Mississauga skyline. Details include: • T he design of the retail ground floor fronting Confederation Parkway adds shelter and visual appeal to the streetscape. Techniques used include a metal canopy, double height windows, stone columns, high quality sidewalk paving materials, and generous street trees. •A  setback above the ground floor combined with balconies on the upper storeys make the podium feel less massive. • T he tower has well-defined “middle” and “top” sections which make it feel less imposing. • T he townhomes have been designed to front onto the edges of the site, hiding the internal circulation areas, and presenting well designed front facades and yards to the street and the pedestrian mews. STRENGTHS •S  ite planning reinforces the pedestrian block while maximizing density •D  istinctive architecture

P1 P1: The residential tower is designed to be slender in order to minimize visual and shadow impacts on the public realm. P2: Town homes incorporate high quality building stone and a good separation between private yard and the public sidewalk. The massing has been broken down to reflect the scale of individual units.

P2

P3: Surface visitor parking and underground garage access are consolidated within the interior of the block.

P4

P4: The mass of the podium has been broken down to reflect the distinctive retail ground floor. P5: Access to the underground garage is located within the interior courtyard.

P3

P5 67


Radio City City of Toronto

Developer

Context Developments Inc.

Architect

architectsAlliance Landscape Architect

Corban and Goode Landscape Architecture and Urbanism

6m 7m 6m 19m

Radio City Condominiums is a key component of successful mixed-use redevelopment efforts on this urban block. The development contributes distinctive architecture and sensitive site planning that is well integrated with the new campus for the National Ballet School. The complex includes two point towers as well as townhomes, sensitively arranged around a sequence of landscaped courtyards and laneways shared with the Ballet School.

~ 78m / 26 st

~ 9m / 3 st

35

m

Mutual St.

P3 P4 P5

Jar

vis

St.

CONTEXT Radio City is situated within a historic residential neighbourhood in downtown Toronto. • T he development connects to Jarvis Street, a busy north-south urban corridor that retains a legacy of heritage Burnet Park mansions. West Don Lands •O  n the west side, the development faces Mutual Street, a quiet residential side street.

P

Mu

tua l St

P2

and

Mailtl

~ 12m / 4 st

tion

Sec

A

W oo

d

St .

.

P1

St

Lakeshore Rd

The National Ballet School tion

Sec

C

St nder

Alexa

on

cti

Se A

Jarvi

Radio City

al St

Mutu

s St

d St Woo

t ch S Chur t on S Carlt

68

Allan Gardens

SENSITIVEForsythe SITEStPLANNING Forsythe St • T he development successfully relates to a number of unique site conditions. • T hree storey townhomes have been scaled and located to restore the streetwall on Mutual Street, supporting the edge of a historic residential neighbourhood. • T wo slender point towers rise from within the site, sized and set back from bordering streets to reduce their perceived bulk, as well as to frame and maximize sunlight penetration to the adjacent Ballet School campus. • T he arrangement of buildings creates a mid-block connection between Mutual and Jarvis Streets and the two landscaped courtyards that link the towers and townhomes to the National Ballet School.


Radio City City of Toronto

28

829.8 u/ha 5,085 m2 422

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE The well-detailed and context-sensitive design of the townhomes fronting on Mutual Street supports their successful integration with the adjacent Victorian residential neighbourhood. • The roofline, form and materials echo the adjacent 19th century rowhouses. • In contrast, the two slender point towers present a clearly modern aesthetic of primarily glass and concrete. STRENGTHS • Sensitive site planning • Distinctive architecture • Mix of building forms to provide density while relating to neighbourhood

P1 P1: Narrow point towers are stepped back from adjacent streets, reducing their perceived size as well as the impact of their shadows. P2: Sensitively scaled modern townhomes front onto Mutual Street, supporting the existing character of this quiet residential side street.

P2

P3: Generous landscaping and street trees provide a good transition between the public side walk and private front yards.

P4

P4: Public art adds visual interest to the shared public entry drive between the two point towers. P5: Underground parking and service access is located through the central entry drive.

P3

P5 69


30m

One Six Nine Lofts 20m

10m

City of Toronto

3m 8m

30m

Developer

30m

Harhay Developments

20m 10m 3m 7.5m 5m 3m 2m

3m

Architect

Core Architects

8m

30m

17.5m

John St.

7.5m 5m 3m 2m

3m

17.5m

John St.

13.5 m

CONTEXT One Six Nine is located on John Street, just north of Queen Street West in downtown Toronto. The development is situated in the midst of the vibrant Queen West mixed-use entertainment and shopping district.

St Pa tricks S

quare

P3

Re f

re w

Pl

.

~ 33m / 11 st

P

One Six Nine leverages highly efficient site planning and an innovative approach to underground parking to maximize density and achieve a good fit with its neighbours on a very small urban site.

P4

• T he site is close to transit, including streetcar routes on Queen Street, and Osgoode Subway Station, three blocks east. • T he building overlooks Street Patrick’s Square, a small urban parkette, and is steps away from Grange Park, a large and popular recreation destination. •A  wide range of amenities, attractions Burnet Park and services are withinWest a short walk of Don Lands this urban site. As such, this development represents an ideal example of how and where to add density within an urban Lakeshore Rd setting.

P5 Sec

B

Se

ct

io

n

A

tion

P2

P1

John

St.

Grange Park

Forsythe St t St Pa rick

St

ST

McC

anie

h Step

rewe

ry Ln

St

r Sh Lowe urne

erbo

•A  ccess to underground parking is provided via an existing rear laneway. •G  iven the narrow lot, a space efficient ‘triple stacker’ car parking system is used to avoid the need to accommodate vehicle turning radii within the garage.

tW en S

St

Que

d St

mon

Rich

70 Scotiabank

INNOVATIVE SITE PLANNING The development replaced two dilapidated brick semi-detached buildings on the site with an eleven-storey slender high-rise building that occupies most of the footprint of this narrow 45 foot wide lot. Old B

t aul S

John

One Six Nine Lofts

Forsythe St


One Six Nine Lofts

City of Toronto

29

927.9 u/ha 495 m2 46

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE The height and massing aligns with an adjacent historic building to the north. However the modern steel and glass aesthetic more closely aligns with recent developments to the south. • T he building layout consists of a single row of units along one side of a corridor, with units oriented to achieve good views to the south, east and west. •B  alconies address the front and rear of the building, and a glass south façade curves gently to give the building a distinctive look.

STRENGTHS • Innovative site planning • Distinctive architecture

P1 P1: One Six Nine Lofts is defined by a modern aesthetic of primarily concrete and glass. P2: A curved south facade of windows provides good views to the entertainment district and beyond. P3: Access to underground parking is provided via an existing rear laneway. Rear balconies overlook Street Patrick Square.

P2

P4: The main entry is supported by a landscaped building frontage area, setback from the street. P5: The main entry is modern and inviting.

P4

P3

P5 71


18 Yorkville City of Toronto

109m

Developer

Great Gulf Homes

Architect

architectsAlliance

25m 6m

6m

4m 4m 12m

Landscape Architect

Janet Rosenberg + Associates

4m 3m 9m

20m

16m

Ba Scollard St. yS t.

18 Yorkville contributes distinctive architecture and sensitive site planning to support and enliven the edge of this unique downtown Toronto shopping and entertainment district.

Cu m

be

rla nd

St .

Yonge St.

~ 109m / 36 st

Yo rk v

ill

e

Av e

CONTEXT 18 Yorkville is situated where Yonge Street meets Davenport Road, at the northeast edge of Yorkville, one of the downtown’s premier shopping and entertainment districts. • T he development is surrounded by a wide range of downtown amenities, transit, and community services. As such, the high-density scale of this development is perfectly suited to this site. •1  8 Yorkville fronts onto Yonge Street, a busy and vibrant urban streetscape, as well as Scollard Street, a quiet side street, and Yorkville Avenue, a central spine Burnet Park through the Yorkville district. The upper West Don Lands floors of the development overlook the Rosedale Valley, part of the city’s network of ravines that passes to the northeast of the site. Lakeshore Rd

P5

P4

Sc

P3

ol

~ 25m / 8 st

P1

la rd

St .

P2

n io

ct

Se

Se

ct

io

n

A

B

Yon g

eS t.

urric

Mcm h St

Forsythe St

Davenport R

d

r St

Collie

St

Bay St t nd S

berla

Cum

ve ith A

Asqu

d Ave ewoo

e Yong

e le Av

vil York

Hom

Toronto Reference Library

18 Yorkville

72

St

ry Ln

rd St

a Scoll

rewe

rch

Old B

Chu

Forsythe St SITE PLANNING The development is composed of three building components, appropriately scaled to relate to unique conditions surrounding the site: • T he slender point tower, at the corner of Yonge Street and Yorkville Ave, is located to minimize shadows across a new park space and to provide good views to the Rosedale Valley. • T he podium building contributes to the street wall on Yonge Street, with retail uses at grade articulated by generous M transparent walls, awnings, tree plantings and sidewalk cafe zones. The podium height creates a comfortable pedestrian environment on the street.

M

r St

Bloo


18 Yorkville City of Toronto

30

1,379.8 u/ha 3,705 m2 511

•A  mid-rise building on the north side of the site (called The Villas) provides grade related residential units that mirror similar developments on Scollard Street. •A  ll three building elements have been organized to frame and support a new public space. As an organizing element for the development, the park provides a transition between the modernist aesthetic of the new buildings and the surrounding historical fabric, including a heritage public library on its west face. Building entrances and overlooking balconies help to enliven the park.

DISTINCTIVE ARCHITECTURE •A  common set of materials used in a different way on each of the buildings allow each building to relate to its surroundings, and still read as part of a whole. • T he Villas townhome building faces north onto Scollard Street and reflects the height, scale and materials of other building on the street. Yellow brick, grade level entrances, windows and plantings help the townhomes fit in with the context. • In contrast, the tower and podium rely on a more modern aesthetic, including prominent glass walls, stone and concrete balconies and metal detailing.

P1 P1: The tower reflects distinctive modern architecture, high ceilings, and significant transparency addressing a prominent corner in the downtown. P2: The development frames a new public open space shared with the Yorkville Public Library, located adjacent to the property.

P2

P3: New retail uses anchor the ground floor of this mixed-use development. P4: Grade related residential units front onto Scollard Street, in context with this quiet side street.

STRENGTHS •S  trong public realm •D  istinctive architecture •E  fficient site design to achieve high density.

P4

P3

P5: Underground parking and service access is consolidated within the interior of the block.

P5 73


Ideal Lofts

74


4 Findings from the Case Studies

The tremendous range of building types and forms illustrated in these case studies demonstrate that medium- to high-density residential development can be seemlessly integrated into existing neighbourhoods and contribute positively to their quality. What are the key ingredients to success? What design considerations should developers, architects, city planners and community groups pay most attention to? We hope that the findings summarized in the following section will be useful today and in the future.

75


Density done well: …is situated in neighbourhoods that possess the range of infrastructure, services and amenities to support it. • T ransit, libraries, community centres, sports facilities, parks and open space, retail opportunities, and schools are required to support increasing numbers of people.

Annex Lane

•A  s higher density housing forms generally come with less private open space and amenity space than single detached housing forms, public space becomes much more important in residents’ daily lives. • T he quality and quantity of community services and amenities should be of paramount consideration in locating density. The best situated housing forms studied are those which are supported by a robust range of community services and amenities.

393 Main Street

18 Yorkville

76


...or is located in an area where plans encouraging the development of community infrastructure, services and amenities are in place to support it. •N  eighbourhoods mature slowly, and the relationship between density and amenity often works the opposite way. That is, community related retail, transit and services tend to locate in areas with sufficient population to support them. •W  hile it is easy to be tempted into judging a higher density development sited in an area lacking in services and amenities as misplaced, it is important to remember that increased residential density can be the initial step in attracting the services and amenities that support it. • In the outer suburbs of the GTHA, residential neighbourhoods have largely been designed for single- and semi-detached homes and exclusively residential uses. Infill within both the outer suburbs and communities is anticipated in the Growth Plan, in order to create more transit-supportive densities, and more complete communities.

Chicago Condos

The Amalfi

•A  project that brings increased residential density to an isolated suburban location without a plan to leverage that density for community benefit is poorly placed and poorly planned. •M  unicipalities must ensure that denser developments are supported by plans that allow residential density, services, retail, and amenities to grow in concert, so that such places can diversify and mature into healthy, vibrant communities. Wyldewyn Village

77


Density done well: …responds to context The diversity of responses to context represented by the case studies illustrates the ingenuity of the profiled architects and developers. The showcased developments have employed a number of techniques to adapt their buildings to their environments: Appropriate height and mass

Hydro Block

•P  erhaps the first and most important technique employed by the case studies is to select a building height and mass, which, although frequently higher than that of surrounding developments, is nevertheless appropriate for the site and surrounding community. • T aller apartment buildings such as Radio City, Chicago Condos and 18 Yorkville were selected in part because their heights and masses are similar to those of the other buildings in their neighbourhood of towers.

The Phoebe

•A  s height and mass generally tell the observer something about the total number of dwelling units and hence people in a development, buildings with higher height and mass should be located in areas with a greater intensity of services and amenities. Thus Radio City and 18 Yorkville are surrounded by an abundance of services and amenities, while the Chicago Condo building is situated within a master planned mixed-use community that promises the same. •H  eight and mass should be designed to ensure minimal impact upon surrounding neighbourhoods. The best examples studied employ heights and masses that minimize shadows, optimize views of the area, and allow maximum light to the street and surroundings while delivering transit, service and retail supportive density.

18 Yorkville

78


Siting and street address • T he positioning of a building on a site can have a profound impact on the street and surrounding area. • In general, a building’s immediate context should determine its position. • In instances where a clear street wall exists, buildings should be sited to reinforce the street wall by matching adjacent set-backs

Wyldewyn Village

•S  etting a building back from the street can be an excellent technique for minimizing perception of density. The Amalfi in Vaughan, and Wyldewyn Village in Richmond Hill deliver exceptionally high density while maintaining the generous setbacks of the adjacent suburban community. In a more urban condition, The Phoebe mitigates pedestrian perception of density along Soho Street with a wide treed setback. • T he orientation a building or development can make the difference between a bustling street and an empty, inactive one.

One Six Nine Lofts

•P  rominent front doors serve to enliven the street, while blank sidewalls generally mute activity. This presents a challenge for buildings situated on corner lots. One clever way to address this design challenge is to have buildings address both frontages. Stonecroft Residences, 393 Main Street, and the Upper East Side have achieved this multidirectional facing to great effect.

18 Yorkville

79


• In general, buildings should be oriented to face onto main streets with major destinations close at hand. This is especially true of townhomes and rowhouses with laneways. Orienting buildings so that front doors provide the shortest route to destinations prevents laneways from being used as the sole entrance to the home.

Rivertowne

•S  etting larger buildings back from the street helps to mitigate perception of height and mass, but overly wide setbacks can create a vacant street and uninteresting street edge. In response to this problem, an ingenious technique used by developments such as Spencer’s Landing, the Chicago Condo and Radio City is to employ townhomes to create an active street while minimizing perception of the height and mass of the set back apartment building.

Sculpting •O  verly tall, bulky buildings are a common feature in urban landscapes. These buildings overwhelm their surroundings, block views, and create excessive shadows.

Radio City

•M  ass and height, however, do not necessarily imply the detrimental effects described above. A number of techniques have been employed by the developments studied above to tame the perception of height and mass. •P  oint towers – The taller apartments in this guide have narrow towers with smaller, roughly square floorplates (18 Yorkville, Radio City). This slender tower design creates narrow, fast moving shadows, while minimizing view disruptions.

20 Niagara

80


•A  rticulation - By changing the pattern of the floor plate, walls, roof and doors and by adding joints and stylized elements, an architect can “break up” the mass of a building. Exceptional examples of this technique are found at 20 Niagara Street, The Renaissance, and Spencer’s Landing. •S  tep backs – Step backs occur when the building mass is shifted back from the street or neighbouring properties in discrete steps with rising height. These moves perceptibly open up the street wall, allowing more light and better sky views. They mask pedestrian perception of building height from the street, and help prevent a ‘canyon’ feel. Step backs allow buildings to match the existing street wall height and contribute to the character of the street while adding density with higher heights at greater distance from the street. This is achieved to great effect by Ideal Lofts, The Phoebe and The Renaissance.

The Phoebe

•H  ouse form apartments can disguise high density with pitched roofs, highly articulated facades, familiar materials and detailing.

The Renaissance

Stonecroft Residences

81


Density done well: …concentrates access points and hides parking Access and parking constitute paramount challenges for architects and developers. As higher density developments, by definition, house more people on the same land area, the answer to the question of what to do with their vehicles has a major impact on site design and architecture. • T he easiest but most expensive way to deal with the added vehicles that result from increased density is to hide them underground. Underground parking maximizes the area of a site available for open space, landscaping and amenities. • T he best of the case studies employing underground parking take vehicular access from a secondary street or laneway, and hide the parking entrance from the main street. Ideal lofts, The Loretto, David B. Archer Co-op and One Six Nine Lofts, provide excellent examples of well executed underground parking. • T he effect of hiding cars underground can be ‘faked’ where topography permits, as is the case at Forsythe Street and Olde York Village. •W  hen the density of development or the cost of the land is insufficient to justify the costs of below grade parking, parking must be accommodated at grade. •B  ecause higher-density, above grade, towns, rows and stacked towns have much higher parking requirements than single and semi-detached housing, the standard garage-in-front approach to parking tends to overwhelm the streetscape, creating front yards dominated by driveways and paving.

Olde York Village

82


• T he developments showcased in this guide provide several attractive and functional at-grade solutions:

» Rear yard parking via laneways » Attached Attached rear garages such as those at Stonecroft and Castle Hill provide convenient parking, while allowing homes to face the street with landscaped, front yards uncluttered by parked cars. This efficient design uses garage roofs as terrace floors, providing additional private amenity space.

» Detached The detached rear garages employed by Upper East Side and 393 Main Street hide parking from the street, while allowing back yard space for landscaping, leisure or gardening.

» Innovative approaches to the garage-in-front The garage-in-front parking solution at Annex Lane provides a simple, cost effective and attractive parking solution on a tight central city site. The effect is a stately mews condition similar to that in places such as central London, England.

83


Density done well: …provides access to high quality outdoor space As access to grade generally decreases with increasing density, the importance of outdoor amenity space increases. The case studies surveyed provide high quality public and private outdoor space in a number of different ways • Private space » Generous balconies and rooftop green space » Private rear or central court yards Radio City

The Loretto

The Amalfi

84

• Public space » Deep, landscaped setbacks » Semi-private rear courtyards


…and provides space and facilities for families A common misconception surrounding high density developments is that these housing types are not well suited to family living. On the contrary, the developments surveyed in this Guide show that the shared costs of amenity space, layout and location of buildings can provide for exceptionally high quality spaces for family enjoyment. • Interior courtyards and interior streets provide safe spaces for play, sheltered from the street at The Phoebe, Rivertowne, The Loretto and Chicago Condos.

Hydro Block

•H  igh quality playground equipment is provided by Hydro Block, Wyldewyn Village, David B Archer Coop, •W  here large public amenity spaces exist, higher density residential development can serve to frame the space with active edges, ensuring that the space is overlooked and safe. These buildings bring life, stewardship and activity to these spaces.

Wyldewyn Village

Rivertowne

85


86


Glossary

87


88


Adaptive re-use: Existing structures that are made suitable for a new use or purpose. Adult lifestyle community: A neighbourhood of mature, retired and semi-retired adults in which the design is focused to enhance amenity in order to ensure a healthy and fulfilling lifestyle. Affordable housing: The cost of adequate shelter should not generally exceed 30% of total household income. Housing which costs less than this is considered affordable. Aging in place: An approach to housing provision and community development that recognizes people’s desire to remain in their communities and/or homes as they age. This approach calls for a range of home types, sizes and locations to accommodate the different needs of people of all ages. Amenity: A desirable or useful feature that contributes to physical, material or emotional comfort of a building or place. Apartment building: A building which contains multiple dwelling units using a shared front entry from the public street. These units may be rental or Condominium. Articulation: In architecture, articulation refers to the way in which different structural elements (including walls, windows and entryways) are composed to create a building, using different materials and form to give them definition. Attainable housing: Market-rate housing that is not subsidized but is available at a cost that is reasonable to people of more modest means. Generally, attainable units tend to be smaller and closer together than other housing forms. Axonometric view: A view taken from an overhead angle which uses a fixed scale for all vertical elements in the view. This preserves the relative scale between elements. Balcony: A platform that projects from the wall of a building and is enclosed by a wall, balustrade, or railing, with access from an upper-floor window or door. Balustrade: A railing supported by posts or spindles, usually made of wood or metal. Bay window: A window built to project outward from an outside wall. Buffer: A space or object that separates potentially incompatible uses in order to protect, absorb or lessen the impact of each on the other. Buffers can include landscaping along the side of a busy street to protect residential or park uses from noise and danger. Building footprint: The measure of the overall area occupied by the ground floor of a building. The footprint is generally measured in square feet or square metres.

89


Building height/street width ratio: An expression of the physical relationship between building height and street width which describes the amount and quality of space created from building face to building face on a public street. A minimum ratio of 1:3 is typically used to provide good street definition and proportion. One rule of thumb is to ensure a building height of one-half the width of the public right-of-way, or a 1:2 ratio, which creates a strong “room-like� street. Building stock: The existing buildings in any given geographical area, usually considered as a group. Bungalow: A one-storey residential dwelling. These often have a low-pitched roof and a broad front porch. Capital projects: Infrastructure projects that are generally designed, funded, and often constructed, by public agencies. Capital projects can include streets and sidewalks, water mains or energy transmission. Casement window: A window that is attached to its frame by one or more hinges at the sides. Cladding: A protective or insulating covering on the exterior of a building. Commercial: A district, property or building that is designed for use by retail, wholesale, office, hotel, or service users (see also Strip-style commercial). Community Housing: Subsidized housing operated by a government agency (see also public housing). Condominium: A type of apartment in which each unit is individually owned. All of the owners have entered into an official agreement to collectively maintain the building. Co-op housing: An arrangement in which an association or corporation owns a group of housing units and the common areas for the use of all the residents. The individual participants own a share in the cooperative, which entitles them to occupy an apartment (or town house) as if they were owners, to have equal access to the common areas, and to vote for members of the Board of Directors that manages the cooperative. A cooperative differs from a condominium project in that condominium owners actually own their unit as an individual, not as part of an association. Cornice: An ornamental moulding which outlines the shape of the building, often near the roofline. Courtyard building: A building arranged around an interior courtyard space, which is accessible to tenants of the building, and is sometimes publicly accessible. Courtyard buildings are generally U-shaped or square. Detached housing: A housing form which stands alone and is not attached to any other housing unit. This form is also commonly referred to as single family housing. Dormer: The part of a building which protrudes from a sloped or angled roof. Dormers often contain windows of various sizes to allow light and air into more confined areas of a building. 90


Double-loaded: A condition of apartment buildings and townhouses in which two horizontal rows of units exist in the same vertical level. These rows may either be attached at the rear (sharing a rear wall) or facing across an enclosed hallway. Entry sequence: The experience of arriving at a building or site from the public street. This sequence can include an entry walk or hallway, front door, and any interior lobby or entry door. Established neighbourhood: A neighbourhood or community that is well-evolved and stable. “Eyes on the Park”: Similar to “Eyes on the street”. A type of natural surveillance system, in which the number of people who live and work around or along a particular park can improve the safety of the park. “Eyes on the Street”: A term coined by Jane Jacobs, an economist and prominent urbanist, used as a type of natural surveillance system, in which the number of people who live and work on a particular street can reduce crime and encourage interaction and the exchange of ideas (see also “Eyes on the park”). Façade: The part of a building that looks onto a street or open space (see also Frontage). Floor area: The area measurement of any given of a building. Floor area is generally measured in square feet or square metres. Floor plate: The size and/or shape of a single storey of any given portion of a building. Frontage: The public front of a building (see Street frontage). Generally this only applies to the ground floor level of the building. Gable roof: A roof with two sloping sides and a gable, or wall, enclosing each end. Garden flat: A dwelling unit on the ground floor of an apartment building which has its own garden, yard, or patio. Glazed/glazing: A structural piece of glass that usually comprises a building façade. Grade: A particular elevation or level. The terms at-grade, or grade-related refer to the parts of a building that can be accessed from the street, sidewalk or adjacent open space. Grade-related housing refers to a type of housing in which each unit has direct access from the front door to the street. Grade change: A difference in level or elevation typically accommodated through the use of stairs or a ramp. Greenfield development: Construction on land that is not constrained by prior development. There is often no need to remodel or demolish an existing structure. GTHA: The Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

91


High-rise: A form of apartment building that is generally higher than 6 storeys, with access to dwelling units provided via a central lobby, elevator(s) and corridor(s). House-form: A type of low-rise apartment. House-form buildings are typically organized around a central lobby and/or courtyard. Industrial lands: Industrial lands support uses that may include warehouses, light-manufacturing plants, research-and-development labs and offices, and are generally separated from other land uses, such as residential, in order to avoid conflicts due to the traffic, odours, noise and pollution. Infill: To erect new buildings in vacant lands between already existing developments. Institutional lands: Lands supporting various uses generally accessible to the public. Institutional uses include educational, religious, health, correctional and military facilities, as well as retirement homes, community centres and other supportive uses. Intensification: The process by which additional density is added to an area of existing development. This can be accomplished by developing more or larger buildings, or the converting of existing buildings to house more residents or workers. Juliette balcony: The Juliette is a type of small balcony that does not protrude out of the building and often involves a metal balustrade placed in front of a high window that can be opened. Laneway: A minor street or alleyway designed to provide vehicular and/or pedestrian access to and through the centre of a block. Laneways may be used for servicing, such as garbage pick-up and deliveries, or parking access, or in rare cases direct residential access. Laneways may be public or private. LEED: Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) provides building owners and operators with a framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions in order to achieve more sustainable building practices. Lintel: a horizontal support across the top of a door or window. Live-work development: A type of mixed-use development that allows residential units to be combined with office, commercial, light industrial, or institutional uses, provided that the other uses do not conflict with the residential use. Low-rise: A type of housing which is generally 2 to 4 storeys in height. Form can range from stacked townhouses to house-form apartments. Mansard roof: A flat roof that has four sides sloped at a steep angle. Generally a mansard roof disguises an extra storey of residential development.

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Market-ownership: The situation of owning a residential unit or property that has been acquired without any subsidy or cost control. This generally applies to all residential units that are not considered “affordable� or are part of a public or community housing development. Massing: The physical size and volume of a building. The term often refers to the relationship different elements of a building have with other surrounding developments. Mews: A pedestrian-only street that has buildings facing onto it. Mews streets are usually well-landscaped and can be faced by residential, commercial, or retail uses. Mid-rise: A form of apartment building that is generally between 4 and 6 storeys in height with access to dwelling units provided via a central lobby, elevator(s) and corridor(s). Mixed-income: A single neighbourhood, building or development offering housing in a range of prices, which allows relatively well-off residents to live side-by-side with relatively low-income residents. Mixed-use: The use of a development (whether in the form of a single building, multiple buildings, or a neighbourhood) for more than one purpose. For example, a building might include both retail and residential uses. Parking ramp: A driveable slope providing access to a multi-storey parking lot. Parking ramps are used when automobile parking is not provided at grade. Patio: A paved outdoor area that adjoins a house. Pilaster: An ornamental rectangular column that typically projects only slightly from a wall. Pitched roof: A sloped roof structure, often leaning to one side of the building or house. Podium: A large street-level building composed of one or more storeys on which a tower can rest. The podium of a residential building often contains commercial uses, and is used to ground the building along a street or adjacent open space. Point tower: A tall building with a typical floor plate area not exceeding 8,000 square feet (743 m2). Portico: A porch or walkway with a roof supported by columns, often leading to the entrance of a building. Post-war housing: Housing that was constructed after World War II (post-1945). Pre-war housing: Housing that was constructed prior to World War II (pre-1939). Public housing: Subsidized housing operated by a government agency (see also community housing). Public realm: All areas, often exterior, accessible to the general public. This can include parks, squares, and public streets.

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Public square: An open public space, often an area of assembly for people. Public street: A publicly owned thoroughfare providing access; includes the roadway, sidewalks and other facilities within the right-of-way (in between property lines). Redevelopment: To erect new buildings in an area that was previously developed. Residential: Dealing primarily with housing, independent of form or density. Generally other uses such as commercial and industrial are not included in this description, with the exception of some smaller retail uses such as corner stores. Rent-geared-to-income: (see subsidized housing) Retail: A commercial district, property or building that is designed to accommodate the selling of goods. The scale of retail establishments can range from a small corner shop to a strip mall or shopping centre. Roof plane: The area of a roof occurring on a single surface; one side of a gabled or mansard roof. Rowhouse: A variation on the Townhouse form, generally with units attached continuously for the length of the block or the development, breaking only for laneway access. Semi-detached: A variation on the Townhouse form, generally with a maximum of 2 continuous units. Setback: The distance between the face of a building and the edge of the public right-of-way. Sill: The horizontal piece of framing found at the bottom of a window or door. Single-loaded: A condition of apartment buildings and townhouses in which only a single horizontal row of units exists. No other units are attached on the same vertical level, either to the rear or facing across an enclosed hallway. Site coverage: The percentage of a site or property that is covered by a building. Site planning: The arrangement of various buildings, roads, parks, and other elements within a development. Site planning often considers building placement and access, parking placement and access, and landscaping, among other issues. Stacked townhome: A variation on the townhome form, in which multiple units are stacked vertically on top of one another. Direct access is provided from the front door of each dwelling unit to the street, sidewalk, or courtyard. This form is generally no taller than 4 storeys. Stepback: An architectural technique where the upper floors of a building are pushed back from the street or adjacent open space in order to reduce the building’s mass and allow more light to penetrate to the ground.

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Street address: A prescribed number assigned to a specific property or building along a street. The phrase can also refer to the condition in which a building has a noticeable presence on the street. Street frontage: The façade or use of a building, or the front of a plot of ground, which is adjacent to a street or public right-of-way (see Frontage). Street grid: A way to describe the pattern of public streets and blocks. The street grid may be regular or irregular, dense or loose. Street wall: The continuous face or frontage of buildings that line a street. Generally the term is used when the building faces are a consistent height, and thus create a “wall”. Streetscape: The character of a street as expressed through the composition of various street elements, including the road, sidewalks, adjoining buildings, street furniture, trees and open spaces, etc. Strip mall: see strip-style commercial Strip-style commercial: A shopping complex consisting of a row of stores, businesses and restaurants, typically in one-storey buildings which open onto a common parking lot (see also strip mall). Surface parking: A vehicular parking lot located at street level. Subsidized housing: A form of affordable housing provided by a government agency for people with limited income. Typically the amount of rent to be paid is determined by the household’s income, and generally ensures that no more than 30% of the gross monthly household income be spent on housing. Terrace: A platform extending outdoors from a floor of a house or apartment building, typically above ground level. A terrace is typically larger than a balcony. Topography: The shape and contour of the ground. “Tower in the Park”: An urban design/architectural style that consists of high-rise apartment buildings set within a large open green space. This style of building was developed by Le Corbusier (1887-1965), a Swiss architect, designer, urbanist and writer. Townhome: A housing form in which a number of housing units are attached to one another end-to-end. These units have front doors which open directly on to the street level and do not have additional units connected directly above or to the rear. Transit: Public mass transportation. Transit generally includes bus, streetcar, subway and commuter rail. Transit supportive communities: Neighbourhoods and/or districts which have been designed to be able to support public transit. Design considerations include density and residential population, a mixture of uses, infrastructure investment, and built form, among others.

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Transportation: The action, or system, of carrying people or goods from one place to another; a means of conveyance or travel. Vernacular architecture: Structures built using locally available resources and traditions, often without the intervention of professional architects. More modern definitions include architecture or buildings of a distinct local style and character. View corridor: Designated areas along thoroughfares that limit or prohibit development or other design elements with the intention of protecting and preserving views of significant natural or constructed areas. Visual interest: A phrase which connotes the complexity visible from the ground or pedestrian level which increases the viewers’ interest and satisfaction in a building, block or neighbourhood. Many different factors contribute to visual interest, including building materials, windows at the street level to show activity in buildings, and details in building or street construction. Walk-up apartment: Any multi-story apartment building form in which an elevator is not present or necessary for access to units. Generally, walk-up apartments are between 2 and 4 storeys and may be single- or double-loaded. Well-appointed: Describing a building or unit which has been designed and built with high-quality materials and accessories. Window well: The area outside a below-ground-level basement window that both retains the surrounding dirt and drains away rainwater.

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Appendix: Case Study Site Plans

The following pages illustrate the 30 Development Case Studies in plan view. They have been arranged in order of increasing density.

97


Upper East Side

3

8

98

393 Main Street

Copperfield Townhomes

15

The Phoebe

Sto

6

The

9

The

55.5 u/ha

Port Credit Village

5

44.1 u/ha

2

5

Stonecroft Residences

51.7 u/ha

33.7 u/ha

are

4

3

Hydro Block

Forsythe Street

1

Forsythe Street

Wyldewyn Village

6

9

The Amalfi

The Loretto

66.1 u/ha

10

1

393 Main Street

7

Upper East Side

8

Copperfield Townhomes

10

Hydro Block


3

Stonecroft Residences

4

The Phoebe 5

393 Main Street

6

T

7

Upper East Side

8

Copperfield Townhomes

9

T

6

The Amalfi

7

Upper East Side

8

Copperfield Townhomes

9

T

homes

9

The Loretto

10

Hydro Block

11

Castle Hill

12

O

homes

92.8 u/ha

9

The Loretto

97.0 u/ha

10

Hydro Block

99.3 u/ha

89.8 u/ha

89.8 u/ha

The Amalfi

89.1 u/ha

6

11

Castle Hill

12

O

12

Oakville Town Square

2

Port Credit Village

12

Oakville Town Square

2

Port Credit Village

13

David B Archer Co-op

14

A

99


10

Hydro Block

Port Credit Village

13

15

14

100

13 David 13 Credit B Archer Co-op David B Archer Co-op Port Village

14

Wyldewyn Village

16

16

Annex Lane

15

Annex LaneLane 14 Annex

14 Annex Lane Annex Lane

15

122.0 u/ha

2

14

111.0 u/ha

Oakville Town Square

101.5 u/ha

12

David B Archer Co-op 13 David B Archer Co-op

Olde York York Village 16 Olde Village

16 Olde Village Olde YorkYork Village

Wyldewyn Village

17

17

130.8 u/ha

2

The Loretto

126.2 u/ha

9

122.9 u/ha

es

Herkimer Apartments 17 Herkimer Apartments

17 Herkimer Apartments Herkimer Apartments

18


Henley Gardens

19

Rivertowne

2

151.9 u/ha

18 140.5 u/ha

s

21

Broadview Lofts

22

The Renaissance

23

101


20

Spencer’s Landing

23

26

102

2023Niaga 20

The22Renaissance The Renaissance

23

2023Niaga 20

25

The25 Central The Central

26

26 Loft Ideal Idea

24 Market Market Square Square

25

The25Central The Central

26

26 Loft Ideal Ide

27

27 Chicago Chicago Condominiums Condominiums

28

28 Radio Radio City City

29

29 Lofts 169 169

27

27 Chicago Chicago Condominiums Condominiums

28

28 Radio Radio City City

29

16929 Lofts 169

22

The22 Renaissance The Renaissance

21

21 Broadview Broadview Lofts Lofts

22

24

24 Market Market Square Square

24 273.8 u/ha

302.2 u/ha

213.4 u/ha

20 Niagara Street

259.4 u/ha

23

23

21 Broadview Broadview Lofts Lofts

21

218.8 u/ha

Spencer’s Landing

178.6 u/ha

20

20 Niagara Street

Ideal Lofts


23

Ideal Lofts

25

The Central

26

Ideal

27

27 Chicago Chicago Condominiums Condominiums

28

28 Radio Radio City City

29

29 169

27

Chicago Condominiums

28

Radio City

29

169

30

1830Yorkville 18 Yorkville

30

18 Yorkville

574.4 u/ha

26

Ideal Lofts

169 Lofts

29 927.9 u/ha

29

Market Square

20 Niagara Street

517.1 u/ha

26

24

829.8 u/ha

ce

20 Niagara Street

169 Lofts

1,379.8 u/ha

23

103


104


Resources

Campoli, Julie and Alex S. MacLean. Visualizing Density. Cambridge MA: Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, 2007. Print. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. “Municipal Initiatives.” Residential Intensification Case Studies. Web. 3 October, 2010. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. “Built Projects.” Residential Intensification Case Studies. Web. 3 October, 2010. Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, The. Better Places to Live by Design: A Companion Guide to PPG3. London: CABE, 2001. Print. Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, The. Design Review: Principles and practice. London: CABE, 2009. Print. George Baird and Robert Levit, John H. Urban Density Case Studies in the Greater Golden Horseshoe. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto, 2011. Print. George Baird and Robert Levit, John H. Density Scenarios: Proposals for Intensification of Selected Urban Growth Centres. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto, 2011. Print. Greater London Authority. Housing for a Compact City. London: Greater London Authority, 2003. Print. Edmonton Design Committee. “Principles of Urban Design.” The City of Edmonton, 6 March, 2006. Web. 30 March, 2012. Fader, Steven. Density by Design: New Directions in Residential Development. Washington DC: Urban Land Institute, 2002. Print. Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. “Visualizing Density.” 2012. Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. Web. 3 October, 2010. Ministry of Infrastructure, Ontario. Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe. Toronto: Ministry of Infrastructure, Ontario, 2006. Print. Mozas, Javier and Aurora Fernandez Per. Density: New Collective Housing. Vitoria-Gaseiz: A+T, 2006. Print.

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106


Acknowledgements The Citizens’ Guide to Density would not have been possible without the dedication and support of the following:

Peer Review Committee Joe Berridge • Urban Strategies Inc Donna Diakun • Ontario Growth Secretariat Pino DiMascio • Urban Strategies Inc Joe Lobko • DTAH Barry Lyon • N Barry Lyon Consultants Katheryn Mills • Ontario Growth Secretariat Eric Turcotte • Urban Strategies Inc

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Cynthia Rattle

Urban Strategies Inc Lina Al-Dajani Tyler Baker Suhaib Bhatti Stephanie Boutari Pascale Dionne Eric Gallant Jed Kilbourn Michael Sraga Ingrid Stromberg Mishi Szabo Michel Trocme Fei Tseng Geoff Whittaker

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