Downtown Toronto's population growth has led to a complementary surge in high-rise construction, dramatically changing the city's skyline. For areas outside downtown, mid-rises are beginning to pop up along the major arterial roads that connect Toronto's diverse neighbourhoods. Mid-rises create walkable, vibrant streets and can generally be more easily absorbed by neighbourhoods where high-rises would be inappropriate. 

DUKE Condos sits at the corner of Dundas and Indian Grove, image courtesy of TASDUKE Condos sits at the corner of Dundas and Indian Grove, image courtesy of TAS

For Toronto's historic Junction neighbourhood, a new mid-rise condominium will grace Dundas Street West. The seven-storey DUKE Condos by TAS had its groundbreaking ceremony on Saturday to officially begin construction. Named for the nearby intersection of Dundas (DU) and Keele (KE), the Quadrangle-designed building includes several stepbacks and indentations that highlight its contrasting white and black brick facade. 

Event attended by TAS CEO/President Mazyar Mortazavi, image by Marcus MitanisThe ceremony was attended by stakeholders including TAS CEO and President Mazyar Mortazavi (centre), image by Marcus Mitanis

The 85 units within DUKE, which are now over 75% sold, range in size from 450 to 1,600 square feet. In addition, two townhomes and five two-storey live-work lofts abut a laneway on the south side of the ground floor. Units include hardwood floors, stone kitchen countertops and a variety of environmentally-friendly features such as energy efficient appliances and energy recovery ventilators to reduce energy use and improve air quality. A green roof will top the building. The north side facing Dundas will be home to commercial space, adding even more retail options to the great selection of shops, restaurants and bars already existing in the area. 

Interiors of the two-storey live-work units, image courtesy of TASInteriors of the two-storey live-work units, image courtesy of TAS

The south side of the building is terraced, resulting in spacious outdoor spaces overlooking the neighbourhood. The upper two floors also provide wraparound terraces that offer great panoramic views. Amenities in the building include a fully equipped gym and an indoor/outdoor dining room, which will be ready to use by the slated occupancy date of Summer 2016. 

The east side of DUKE Condos on Indian Grove, image courtesy of TASThe east side of DUKE Condos on Indian Grove, image courtesy of TAS

TAS prides itself on working with the communities in which they develop. TAS sponsored the Junction Flea, which became a popular spot for independent vendors to sell antiques, food, clothing and other items. Since the Flea occupied the spot of DUKE Condos, it has now moved to a new location on Sterling Road just north of Dundas. The DUKE Condos sales centre was also designed and built by locals, with nearly all interior finishes sourced from nearby businesses and artisans. 

TAS and Quadrangle officials, locals and purchasers, image by Marcus MitanisRepresentatives from TAS, Quadrangle and the Junction BIA pose with locals and purchasers, image by Marcus Mitanis

Alcohol was prohibited in the Junction for almost one hundred years, with the ban only being lifted in 2000. Since then the neighbourhood has witnessed the opening of several restaurants, cafés, and bars, while furniture, home furnishing, and antique shops have popped up in other heritage storefronts. There is no doubt that the injection of residents and retail at DUKE Condos will help the neighbourhood continue to progress and thrive. 

For more information and images on DUKE Condos, visit the dataBase file linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum thread or leave a comment in the field provided.