Yesterday we stopped by Aspen Ridge HomesStudio and Studio2 on Richmond, one of the many high-rise condominium developments currently rising in Toronto’s Entertainment District. The 31 and 41-storey Quadrangle Architects-designed towers will add a combined 762 condominium units to the rapidly densifying area just west of the Financial District.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoStudio's Richmond Street frontage, image by Jack Landau

A quick walk around the site perimeter reveals the layout of the site. The southern mid-rise which fronts onto Nelson Street is structurally complete while work is underway on the 10th floor of the 31-storey Studio north tower.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoStudio's mid-rise portion facing Nelson Street, image by Jack Landau

Level 10 is the first of Studio’s tower floorplate, which is now expected to rise at an unprecedented rate of one floor every 3 days until topping out this Summer.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes Toronto10th floor underway at Studio, image by Jack Landau

Work is also moving along on cladding the podium of the north tower and south mid-rise. At the time of our visit, an extra lane of Richmond Street was closed to accommodate a portable crane onsite to hoist pieces of the podium’s precast cladding into place.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoPortable crane hoisting precast cladding in place, image by Jack Landau

Varied shades of precast will help to break up the almost block-long north and south podium façades.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoRichmond Street facade as seen in the scale model, image by Jack Landau

At Duncan and Nelson, construction has reached another major milestone with work now underway on the ground floor of the 41-storey Studio2.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoStudio2 at grade, image by Jack Landau

Much of Studio’s ground floor Richmond Street frontage will be handed over to OCAD University after construction concludes, at which point the art and design school will transform the space into a new gallery. 

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoFuture OCAD University gallery space, image by Jack Landau

Ample walls dividing the room into segments on a north-south axis will provide plenty of display space with lots of natural light. This gallery serves as the Section 37 contribution for Studio.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoFuture OCAD University gallery space, image by Jack Landau

Immediately east of the future OCAD space is the site for the first phase’s main residential entrance.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoSite of the first phase main residential entrance, image by Jack Landau

A few feet further to the east, Studio’s fitness centre will occupy the ground floor’s northeastern corner.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoFuture fitness centre on Studio's ground floor, image by Jack Landau

Below ground, the Studio/Studio2 complex holds 485 parking spaces. The uppermost floor of this parking garage will be a public lot, and double as paid visitor parking.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoP1 level at the Studio/Studio2 complex, image by Jack Landau

Up until recently, three cranes were in use at the Studio/Studio2 site. With much of the work on the southern mid-rise portion complete, one crane has since been taken down leaving an empty column running from the roof down to the foundation. 

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoEmpty space left by the project's southern crane, image by Jack Landau

This gap is now being filled in by crews floor-by-floor, and the same process is soon to begin on the lower floors of the towers as the two cranes continue to rise.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoConcrete filling the empty space left by the project's southern crane, image by Jack Landau

Back above ground, an expansive 3rd floor terrace divides the south mid-rise and the (currently at-grade) 41-storey Studio2 from the rising 31-storey Studio.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoLooking west from the east side of the 3rd floor terrace, image by Jack Landau

Moving higher up, the 9th floor of the complex will be home to Mike Niven Interior Design's extensive "MeZone" and "WeZone" amenity spaces, the former aimed at relaxation and the latter at socializing. In the image below we can see the concrete forms of level 10, the first tower floorplate, taking shape.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoView of the 10th floor taking shape from the top of the podium, image by Jack Landau

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoOngoing work atop Studio's podium, image by Jack Landau

While we have already discussed Studio and Studio2’s amenity spaces in previous articles, we had yet to see the very urban views from these 9th storey spaces.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoLooking north towards St. Patrick St., image by Jack Landau

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoView of Richmond Street, image by Jack Landau

The elevated vantage points found on the upper levels of Studio’s podium also provide an overview and better understanding of the complex and its local context.

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoView of Studio2's footprint (right) and part of Studio's south building, image by Jack Landau

Studio and Studio2 on Richmond Quadrangle Architects Aspen Ridge Homes TorontoStudio and Studio2 site, 3rd floor terrace visible in the middle, image by Jack Landau

We will return to Studio and Studio2 in the coming months as construction progresses. In the meantime, additional information including building facts, renderings and floorplans for Studio and Studio2 on Richmond can be found in our dataBase file, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Head over to one of the associated Forum threads, or voice your opinion in the comments section provided at the bottom of this page.