In the past couple of months, another of the Entertainment District's remaining few surface parking lots saw the end of its days. Located at the corner of Pearl and John streets, preliminary construction work had already begun on Pinnacle International's PJ Condos at the tail end of 2016. Set to rise 48 storeys and 157 metres (515 feet), the Hariri Pontarini Architects and Turner Fleischer Architects-designed project will add an additional 321 condo units to the burgeoning Entertainment District upon completion. 

PJ Condos, Turner Fleischer, Hariri Pontarini Architects, Pinnacle InternationalExcavation of PJ Condos as of April 22, image by Forum contributor salsa

Demolition of the onsite sales centre took place in late October, while shoring equipment arrived at the site and started work just over a month later. As of February, shoring had reached substantial completion, and now recent updates on the UrbanToronto Forum thread reveal that excavation has begun for the mixed-use condo.

As the soldier piles (vertical steel beams) and lagging (horizontal wooden timbers) have now been set in place along the excavation perimeter, construction workers are now able to pick up the space, set to eventually reach five levels below grade later this year. On the northern end of the site, a concrete pad has been poured to serve as a staging area for construction, allowing construction to proceed without blocking off a lane of traffic on Adelaide. The slab includes a smaller, slightly raised footprint at the northeast corner of the site, set to be the building's ground floor here, while the lower northwestern half will eventually be part of the pedestrian piazza.

PJ Condos, Turner Fleischer, Hariri Pontarini Architects, Pinnacle InternationalThe concrete staging area at the north end of the site, image by Forum contributor drum118

Designed by Janet Rosenberg + Studio, the piazza will serve as a counterpart and extension of the public space situated directly across the street at The Pinnacle on Adelaide. This, along with the planned and recently funded $40 million John Street Revitalization will see a thoroughly redesigned pedestrian-oriented street evolve over the coming few years, with PJ adding about 1,800 square feet of retail facing John Street. 

PJ Condos, Turner Fleischer, Hariri Pontarini Architects, Pinnacle InternationalAerial view of the site, image by Forum contributor friendlyfuture

While excavation is underway, Pinnacle has recently resubmitted for Site Plan Approval (SPA), essentially fine tuning some small details of the plan. The most notable is perhaps the decrease in residential units, originally from 372 to 366, and now most recently 321. The architectural design of the building has remained untouched, as the distinct red brick rising 48 storeys will undoubtedly stand out in the blue-glass dominated area.

PJ Condos, Turner Fleischer, Hariri Pontarini Architects, Pinnacle InternationalRendering of PJ Condos, image courtesy of Pinnacle International

We will keep you up to date as construction moves along. Additional renderings and information can be found in the project's dataBase, in the field below. Want to share your thoughts on PJ Condos? Feel free to leave a comment in the space provided on this page, or join in the ongoing conversation in the associated Forum thread.