Another heritage building in Toronto is set for a major makeover. The former Broadview Hotel, a local Riverside landmark that once housed the infamous strip club Jilly's which closed earlier this year, will be transformed into a 57-room boutique hotel by Streetcar Developments after approval was granted yesterday by the Committee of Adjustment for some variances required to the zoning by-law. 

704 Queen Street East, formerly the home of Jilly's, image by Marcus Mitanis704 Queen Street East, formerly the home of Jilly's, image by Marcus Mitanis

The plans call for several changes to the property, including a new rooftop bar and an executive suite within the peaked corner tower. The listed heritage building, now being considered for designation, will also host a ground floor restaurant, adding to the ambiance of the Riverdale neighbourhood.

Preservationists will be happy to know the iconic red brick facade of the Romanesque building will be maintained by heritage specialists ERA Architects, with the northern three-storey section of the building undergoing retrofitting to accommodate a new guest entrance. In addition to the exterior restorations, the interiors of the building will need a significant amount of work, including structural repairs. The extent of the renovations and expansion, also to be overseen by ERA Architects, are shown in the east elevation drawing provided by Streetcar Developments below. 

Plans include new entrances and a rooftop bar, image by Streetcar DevelopmentsPlans for the building include new entrances and a rooftop bar, image courtesy of Streetcar Developments

An informal poll conducted by Streetcar asked what the community wanted at the site, with the results indicating a hotel and restaurant as the top choices among survey respondents. "Our vision for the Broadview Hotel is to revitalize the iconic landmark and create an exciting public destination for the whole neighbourhood to enjoy," said Les Mallins, Founder and President of Streetcar Developments. "As part of this process, we have worked with the city planning and heritage staff to ensure our proposal is supported by all." 

Built in 1891, the structure originally acted as a public hall and also contained office space. It was then converted into the New Broadview Hotel 16 years later, followed by a strip club and boarding house up until its 2014 closure. 

Riverside Square to add to vibance of Riverdale, image by Streetcar DevelopmentsRiverside Square set to add to the vitality of Riverdale, image courtesy of Streetcar Developments

No stranger to the area, Streetcar has already had success in Riverside and adjacent neighbourhoods, with recent projects like Sync Lofts on Queen Street, yet their vision for the neighbourhood does not stop there. Their dramatic plans for the Toyota dealership site on Queen Street, just east of the Don Valley Parkway, features four condominiums atop an abundance of retail to help animate the area even further. Dubbed Riverside Square, the mixed uses of the development aim to contribute to the walkability of Riverside while also revitalizing a site that desperately needs an injection of life. 

For more images and information check out the dataBase files linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Visit the associated Forum threads or leave a comment at the bottom of this page.