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Toronto 277 Victoria St & 38 Dundas St E | ?m | ?s | TMU

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This is the old Hakim Optical. Looks like the building is being gutted but I didn't find any city app. for it. Great spot for a restaurant with a giant patio.

hakimm9.jpg
 
If they are going forward with a Times Square type mimic, an LCD media tower will probably be the use here, alongside some kind of restaurant / flagship retail space.
 
I can't for the life of me find them now, but the original sketches for Dundas Square showed Metropolis, The Torch, and a hotel on this spot surrounding the square. The hotel was to be made from joining the existing Ryerson building and Hakim Optical building sites together for a slightly irregularly shaped lot, with the Ryerson building being demolished. If I remember correctly, the base of the hotel was to also include new educational space to compensate for the loss of the existing building. The hotel looked to be in about the forty storey range.
 
If this building were to be demolished outright, I wonder if the newly opened space could somehow be integrated with Yonge-Dundas Square, despite being separated by a street. Times Square does a good job of integrating otherwise disconnected open spaces.
 
Lets just leave it--Toronto needs to have at least a little bit of old fashioned blight, just to offset the conversion of downtown to a mainstream mecca of condos and chain stores.
 
Lets just leave it--Toronto needs to have at least a little bit of old fashioned blight, just to offset the conversion of downtown to a mainstream mecca of condos and chain stores.

if you walk east of Victoria, there is plenty of old fashioned blight to see. No need to worry about the need to preserve the grittiness.
This should come down, or to be revamped. It is too close to Dundas Square. We don't need to give people such bad impression. Ideally downtown between Spadina to Jarvis should be all either modern shining towers or well preserved heritage buildings. Nothing like this, which is neither functional nor pretty.
 
and unfortunately under built. It'll probably rot until it falls over than some 20 floor sliver condo will replace it after acting as a small parking lot for a decade.
 
Not just this building - the alley behind it is treacherous - I seriously think there might be a lot of illegal business there - designer jean for $29? All this right beside Eaton Centre, beyond my comprehension.

This is a prominent location, and what works best is a high end hotel.
 
Sandblast the brick, put in paned windows, landscape the front of the building and you've got a very attractive piece of property.

Wouldn't you have to address this first??

Apparently there was a watermain break that severely damaged the building's foundation.

I don't think any landlord in his right of mind would be spending big bucks on this piece of crap
 
Sandblast the brick, put in paned windows, landscape the front of the building and you've got a very attractive piece of property.
Though I suspect this building is not worth saving, sandblasting the bricks would be a sure-fire way to destroy it. Sandblasting brick breaks down the hard outer layer and allows water to penetrate and then the bricks just crumble. Brick can be washed (or even turned around as they did on Market Street) but never sandblasted. (See: http://www.masonryconstruction.com/Images/Don't Sandblast Brick_tcm68-1374626.pdf )
 
I'm always baffled at people's total lack of imagination with regard to historic buildings in need of rehabilitation. Most of Europe - all of those cherished streets enriched by charming restored 'fabric' buildings (as opposed to monumental buildings), were at some point in the last century looking far worse than this. For a local example look no further than King and Spadina, - many of the buildings west of Spadina looked like dozer-bait, or at the Big Bop/CB2. With some investment, as long as the roof has not been left caved in for a long period of time, these buildings are entirely restorable. If people give a damn about history and urban richness they will see the value in these buildings. If not, Toronto will continue down the path towards banality and corporate homogeneity.

I find this building to be particularly charming in the way it's chamfered to match the shifting grid of the old street pattern. If restored this will be the only interesting element in the entire dundas square clusterduck.
 
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