News   Aug 09, 2022
 1.9K     2 
News   Aug 09, 2022
 1.4K     0 
News   Aug 09, 2022
 605     0 

New St Lawrence Library (City of Toronto, ?s, ?)

jsmith77

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Oct 21, 2013
Messages
307
Reaction score
1,097
My only hope is that they just dot the esplanade with 80 storey towers, cover the sidewalks and turn it into an above ground PATH. I think if we just get 6 more super towers we’ll have solved the housing crisis.
 

DSC

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Jan 13, 2008
Messages
15,264
Reaction score
15,530
Location
St Lawrence Market Area
What a fantastic idea!
The idea of affordable housing on top of the new St Lawrence Library was discussed. The reason it was not moved forward was that the site is fairly small and adding a residential component with lobby, parking and elevators etc would reduce the usable space that the library needs. The building will also have a green roof that MAY be public and reached via a bridge over The Esplanade from the South Market.
 

innsertnamehere

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Mar 8, 2010
Messages
17,120
Reaction score
16,001
don't need parking any more - which saves a ton of space. If the city allowed a reverse out loading space, it would probably fit fine with the library.
 

DSC

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Jan 13, 2008
Messages
15,264
Reaction score
15,530
Location
St Lawrence Market Area
don't need parking any more - which saves a ton of space. If the city allowed a reverse out loading space, it would probably fit fine with the library.
The parking levels would not take 'library space' but the lobby, elevators, fire exits etc would. To be workable, a library needs a fairly large footprint and not too many floors to supervise.
 

TossYourJacket

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Feb 22, 2018
Messages
944
Reaction score
2,307
A lot can be done with small footprints if 86 John St is to be believed

That project isn't trying to include a public library, so it's not really a fair comparison. The issue here isn't that you can't fit a lot onto a small site, but that reducing the amount of space per floor for the library would make the library less functional.
 

interchange42

Administrator
Staff member
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 23, 2007
Messages
25,908
Reaction score
30,152
Location
by the Humber
A lot can be done with small footprints if 86 John St is to be believed

7 years on that one so far and still no move towards marketing or building… so is it to be believed?

42
 

AlbertC

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 24, 2007
Messages
18,854
Reaction score
45,214
Location
Davenport
I like the concept of 86 John Street, but with rising building costs it'll be increasingly difficult to make the numbers work. 14 residential units in a (narrow) 10 storey building may be a tough case, especially as there doesn't seem to be much momentum behind the project either.
 

smably

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jun 26, 2009
Messages
1,671
Reaction score
4,599
Location
Wallace Emerson
Important piece by @AlexBozikovic (paywalled) in the Globe today about this library, and Toronto public architecture in general: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/art-and-architecture/article-toronto-public-buildings/

The whole thing is great, but here are a few highlights:
The Toronto Public Library is planning a noteworthy building project: a new branch for the St. Lawrence neighbourhood downtown. At 30,000 square feet, this will be a major public facility in one of the most visited parts of the city.

It should be one of the country’s most significant architectural commissions of the decade. In Europe, it would be the subject of a design competition that would attract top talent from across the continent.

But that is not how things work in Toronto or in most of Canada. We don’t value public architecture, and we aren’t willing to pay for it.
The problem is procurement. It begins with a catch-22. The library, like most governmental organizations, wants architects to show they’ve recently designed three similar projects. If you haven’t done it already, you can’t do it. This approach shuts out new voices, and it is unnecessary.

Another issue is fee. The library’s 7-per-cent number is not sufficient. It amounts to $2.1-million on a $30-million building, and includes thousands of hours of consultation, design and construction supervision, along with the subcontracts of other consultants – including engineers. And it’s low enough that architects run the risk of losing money.

Yet the work of these professionals will determine how the building works for many decades. In the long term, the costs of construction and maintenance are vastly larger than the design fee. Nickel-and-diming up front makes no sense.

The piece goes on to compare our procurement process with that of Edmonton, where the chief architect (!) has improved procurement so top-tier architects bid on (and win) public commissions.
 

Northern Light

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
May 20, 2007
Messages
20,242
Reaction score
47,978
Location
Toronto/EY
A Member Motion on the subject of this project has been added to the agenda for this Council Meeting.

As outlined below, Cllr. Mihevc's motion seeks to embrace the City-Building opportunities of this project, including possible
community hub, affordable housing, pedestrian linkages and outdoor green space.

1655329612336.png
 

DSC

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Jan 13, 2008
Messages
15,264
Reaction score
15,530
Location
St Lawrence Market Area
This is certainly worth investigating but, as a librarian, I know the problems of having too many floors in a library (and more than one entrance) and if 'they' add housing on top of the library the library will need at least one more floor to give enough space (the elevators to the residential would take up space) and an additional entrance to library via a bridge from South Market would, I think, inevitably mean another entrance and security problems. There MAY be great solutions, but they will not be easy!

One possibility is to increase the foot-print and (at least) narrow Wilton Street.
 

jsmith77

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Oct 21, 2013
Messages
307
Reaction score
1,097
Sounds like overburdening the site, so again- go back to a parliament square park site, slap a tower on top and make this lot a park again. Mihevc is a straight shooter right? He’s not trying to play games to move it is he?
 

Top