City approves Tridel’s Ten York design after extensive review process – Condo.ca Canada’s Condominiu m Social Community and Magazine

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City approves Tridel’s Ten York design after extensive review process

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Realtors at the Tridel Presentation Centre for Ten York condos on November 3. The building has gone through an extensive process of review and consultation. Today, November 6, the plan was approved by the Community Council, City of Toronto. It will go before City Council next week.

When Tridel made public its proposed Ten York project in November, 2011, it created quite a buzz. The building was to be 75 stories tall, which would make it one of the tallest buildings in the city. It would occupy a site that presented unique challenges to an architect: a somewhat unlikely wedge of land between York Street, Harbour Street and the Gardiner expressway.

The architect for the project, Rudy Wallman, called the triangular site “difficult” but also one that presented interesting possibilities. For example, just north of the site, on the other side of the Gardiner Expressway, are rising the twin Ice condos, which are similar in height, at about 67 stories. The Tridel building and the Ice buildings would act as a kind of “gateway” for people driving through the city on the Gardiner, Wallman said.

Public consultation improves the quality of decisions because it provides an opportunity to examine a project’s underlying issues, assess its real impacts and help effect improvements. Public consultation is a key objective of the Corporation and is in keeping with our core values of accountability and transparency.

Waterfront Toronto

As is usual, a development like this must go through a process of review and consultation before getting final approval. Tridel’s Ten York, because of its location, falls within the authority of Waterfront Toronto. The project went before Waterfront Toronto’s Design Review Panel for the first time in April last year. At that time, the panel took issue with the building’s six-story podium, which housed several stories of above-ground parking, as well as with the way the building engaged with the street and with pedestrian traffic. The question of vehicular traffic was also raised, a question that would come up again and again at several public meetings. Residents of the Harbourfront area later expressed their concerns that a large development like Ten York would bring more cars into the area than the already congested area could handle.

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Toronto skyline with Ten York (centre). Waterfront Toronto’s Design Review Panel considers the way a building like this will fit in with existing structures to contribute to a pleasing skyline.

As well, the design committee had concerns about the overall appearance of the building and with the way it interacted with other buildings in the area. They considered how the new building would fit in with the existing skyline, and how it would impact the view of the city from the lake.

As a result of these and other consultations—altogether, Tridel went before the Design Review Panel three times and received input from the public three times—the project has been substantially modified: it’s now 65 stories tall, not 75; the above-ground parking in the podium is gone; the building will have underground parking for 280 cars, approximately 40 per cent of the 726 units in the building.

The redesigned, triangular shape of the building reflects the shape of the site more closely, and its lines are sharper and sleeker; sidewalks around the podium have been widened, more trees included in the landscaping plans, and the building’s lobby has been made more spacious. Retail space has been incorporated in the main floor design, next to the lobby on the York Street end of the building.

Today, the City of Toronto’s Community Council gave its approval to the revised plans for Ten York. The plan will go before City Council next week, and is expected to be passed without delay.

Ten York is currently selling and, according to Tridel, interest is high, with “phones ringing off the hook” for a month now and registrations “pouring in.”

Brandon Lee Cell 416-471-0353, HL/Bayview

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