A proposed student residence tower at Spadina and Sussex on the west edge of the University of Toronto's St. George Campus has been in planning stages since 2014, and is now closing in on approval. A series of previously confidential City Council reports have been made public over the past few days, including a settlement plan detailing the latest in a series of revisions to the project’s design. The documents now circulating for the Spadina and Sussex Mixed Use Residence represent a final step in the appeals process, with the settlement expected to be finalized at a Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) meeting scheduled in September.

Spadina and Sussex Residence, University of Toronto, Daniels, Diamond Schmitt Latest design for the Spadina and Sussex Mixed Use Residence, image via submission to City of Toronto

Led by the University of Toronto in partnership with The Daniels Corporation, the 23-storey, Diamond Schmitt Architects-designed building has gone through several changes since initially proposed. A 2.3-metre height reduction brings the latest version to a height of 76 metres, while the tower massing has been adjusted to incorporate an existing building facade at the corner. The building's exterior expression has also been thoroughly redesigned, now with ample use of brick cladding, windows arranged in vertical strips and framed by projecting fins acting as brise soleils. A block of two-storey townhomes continues to be proposed to the west as part of the development.

Spadina and Sussex Residence, University of Toronto, Daniels, Diamond Schmitt Previous and current designs for Spadina and Sussex Mixed Use Residence, image via submission to City of Toronto

As mentioned above, the existing building at 698 Spadina Avenue its facades are now proposed to be incorporated into the new structure. While not recognized by the City as a heritage building at the time of the initial proposal back in 2016, Council has since stated its intention to designate the building, leading to the currently-planned retention.

Spadina and Sussex Residence, University of Toronto, Daniels, Diamond Schmitt Elevation diagrams, Spadina and Sussex Mixed Use Residence, image via submission to City of Toronto

The revised plan will provide beds for 511 students, part of the U of T's long-term plan to create housing for 2,300 additional students by 2020. Residents will have access to a selection of common areas geared toward the student lifestyle, including a study space, a project/experiment room, a music practice room, a fitness studio, and a student laundry room, all located on the mezzanine level. The second floor will house a pair of dining halls and associated kitchens and offices, as well as a multipurpose event space.

Additional information and images of current and previous versions can be found in our database file for the project, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum threads, or leave a comment in the field provided at the bottom of this page.