Last week, developer Davpart officially announced The United BLDG, a towering 55-storey condominium development in Downtown Toronto at St Patrick subway station. Designed by B+H Architects, it will incorporate the heritage-designated Maclean Publishing Company/Maclean-Hunter Building at 481 University Avenue along with neighbouring existing buildings in its base.

The United BLDG., 481 University, Davpart, B+H, TorontoThe United BLDG., image courtesy of Davpart

Davpart Inc. President and CEO David Hofstedter spoke at the launch about the site's history and architectural significance. “From 1910 to the 1980s, 481 [University] was the location of Maclean Publishing and later Maclean-Hunter with several buildings added to become one of the most recognized structures on University Avenue. The existing structure is an example of a commercial building from the interwar era and is the result of many bold design influences, from Beaux-Arts to Modern Classical.  While restoring the exterior, we will complete the interior to the highest standard of contemporary office and retail available today, so their current uses can continue.”

The United BLDG., 481 University, Davpart, B+H, TorontoDavpart Inc. President and CEO David Hofstedter, image by Edward Skira

The existing complex's preservation and incorporation—tasked to heritage specialists ERA Architects—will restore the architectural features to their original glory, as well as reanimating a section of the ground floor by transforming a series of arches into a sheltered colonnade that widens the Dundas Street sidewalk. ERA Architects Principal Graeme Stewart describes the firm's role as “retaining, restoring and enhancing two large and significant buildings."

The United BLDG., 481 University, Davpart, B+H, TorontoDundas Street colonnade at The United BLDG., image courtesy of Davpart

The complex's 1930s collegiate gothic building and mid-century stone tower will live on with 224,245 ft² of commercial office space and 39,320 ft² of retail space from the ground floor to the 10th floor.

Above the commercial and retail floors, 759 new condominium residences are being offered in a mix of one bedroom, two bedroom, and three bedroom designs—some with a den, flex, or media room, and others with two-storey plans—ranging in size from 300 ft² to 1,400 ft². Residents will access their suites via a dedicated residential entrance at 88 Centre Street, as well as through an indoor access point to St Patrick Station.

The United BLDG., 481 University, Davpart, B+H, TorontoResidential entrance at The United BLDG., image courtesy of Davpart

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

* * *

UrbanToronto has a new way you can track projects through the planning process on a daily basis. Sign up for a free trial of our New Development Insider here.

To request more info directly from The United BLDG click here