When General Motors Canada (GM) purchased the site of the former Cinespace film and television studio at 721 Eastern Avenue, their initial plans were to construct a new Canadian headquarters for their Cadillac brand, along with building a flagship dealership. Just shy of a year since the transaction transpired, new documents on the City of Toronto's development application website outline a grander vision that GM has for the site.
To be named the Toronto GM Mobility Hub, the Quadrangle Architects-designed proposal seek a rezoning and plan of subdivision, as the project envisions a master-planned employment campus spanning seven acres and three development blocks, totalling approximately 882,640 square feet in size. The site would accommodate space for up to 3,000 new jobs, with 150-265 of those being high-paying skilled jobs for the GM Campus.
Planned for the southernmost of the three development blocks, the GM Mobility Campus would boast a highly visible location with frontage along Lake Shore Boulevard East for a new Cadillac Canada National Sales and Marketing Headquarters, a GM Canada Regional Sales Office, a Maven™ Canada offices and facilities, a Chevrolet Buick GMC dealership, a Cadillac dealership, service space, an Urban Mobility Research & Development office, all along with a café.
Currently, GM is in talks with potential partners to develop Sites 2 and 3 on the north side of the site, with office use and retail/personal service spaces to serve the employees within the campus. A new public street would connect Eastern Avenue through the site to Lake Shore Boulevard, and for cyclists, the Don River Trail, designed with a 20-metre Right-Of-Way (ROW), and 8.5-metre sidewalks on either side.
GM's building is planned as a 3-storey base with three distinctive 2-storey wings stretching southwest, south, and southeast. Surrounding the wings is a green roof. Site 2, on the northwest part of the site, would see a 4-storey base building fronting Eastern Ave, rising to 9 storeys in the middle of the development property. Across the proposed public street is Site 3, also featuring a 4 storey base building along Eastern Avenue. The northeast block would have a larger footprint and boast two 12-storey buildings on its south side.
One significant aspect of the redevelopment would be the creation of a public realm on a site which essentially does not have one now, through pedestrian amenities like wide sidewalks and the addition of over 120 trees in a landscaping program.
We will keep you up-to-date as this project advances through the planning process. Our new dataBase file is now up and running, linked below. Want to share your thoughts on the GM Complex? Feel free to leave a comment in the space provided below, or join in the ongoing conversation in the associated Forum thread.