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Shipyards, The (Collingwood, Fram & Slokker, Giannone Petricone)


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Apr 23, 2007
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by the Humber
For the long Canada Day weekend, Urban Toronto thought that, like many of you, we would get out of town for a couple of days, and when looking around Ontario's vacation lands for a project to highlight, we found one in Collingwood that pushed all of our buttons. The Shipyards, a 40 acre brownfield site on the shore of Georgian Bay immediately north of Collingwood's charming downtown, is a major project for partners Fram Building Group and Slokker Real Estate Group, the team that transformed Mississauga's derelict Port Credit harbour area into an award winning residential and commercial mix. Pprt Credit's mix of retail and restaurants, handsome townhomes and low rise condominiums, plus public access to waterfront parkland boded well for this very similar site in Collingwood. It also caught our attention that the Canadian Urban Institute gave The Shipyards its Brownie award for the best project for the redevelopment of a former industrial site in Canada, beating even Vancouver's Olympic athlete's village for the honour. We knew we had to check it out.

UrbanToronto visited on a special day for The Shipyards. On June 25, Fram and Slokker celebrated the opening of Collingwood's new waterfront promenade by inviting the community for an afternoon of speeches by local dignitaries, a walkabout, and a bayside reception: Collingwood residents would be able to enjoy the water right downtown for the first time in 125 years.

Come along with us today for the celebrations and a quick look, and then revisit tomorrow when we'll bring you many more details of this remarkable project, and we'll give you an overview of Collingwood Downtown's impressive street renovations too.


The ceremony was held at the harbour's edge. The first phases of construction at The Shipyards are visible behind:


The walkabout took us past the first lowrise condominium building on the site:




After turning a corner, we found areas to relax by the lake, and homes close to completion across from the harbour's new green edge:



The reception was held in new parkland at the west end of the site, including an area built as an amphitheatre, ready to host lakeside events in the future.


Seen from across the harbour, the Shipyards site is just starting to take shape.


We'll bring you back tomorrow for lots of rendery goodness, and lots of details.

This looks really quite promising... but it's nearly upstaged by Helena Guergis' extraordinarily ditzy performance in that video. Everyone else comes off pretty well actually. I had no knowledge of Collingwood's mayor before, but with one quick speech I have to say that Chris Carrier sounds exactly how you want a mayor to sound: smart. For a 10 minute video, it blows by really quickly, which is to say that there's a fair bit of interesting material in it.

I think I'm talking myself into going up there.
Along with Collingwood's waterfront area getting a makeover, the town's main street, the north end of Hurontario Street, is also seeing a $7 million facelift come to fruition currently. The last plantings are going in and the last pavers are being laid in a project funded with $2 million of infrastructure stimulus funding from the federal government, $2 million from the provincial government, $2 million from the Town of Collingwood, and $1 million from the Collingwood Downtown Business Improvement Area itself.

This is a main street that every town in Ontario would like to have; one with a thriving retail and restaurant scene, one with lots of heritage architecture, and one with an active BIA. Check out what they've managed to do with it in the last year:








Dog walkers meet up outside the town hall:


The Federal Building is one of the most impressive on the street:



When Loblaws built a few years ago, the building was designed to fit in with the street's ambiance:


One block to the east is the town's new offices and library. The building by WGD Architects is the first LEED Gold certified library in Ontario.


Today; renders and model shots of what's to come at The Shipyards.

A view across the site from the southwest. Buildings not yet constructed nor yet on sale are modeled in acrylic:


Parkland lies along the west side of the site.



Westmount Collection townhomes face the harbour.




Building No 1, closest to us in these images, is nearing completion:



Architectural details on the back of Building No 1:



Building No 2, closest to us in these images, will be the next low-rise condominium to be built.



Views of the Launch Basin's ultimate plan. Buildings on the east side of the basin will feature ground level retail:




A restaurant will eventually be built at the end of this point:


More on The Shipyards to come!

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Thanks for the updates and C-Wood pics. I travel through C-Wood almost once a week in the winter going to Blue Mtn., yet I've never been there in the summer. I've been following the Shipyards development for several years since it was originally announced so I am really glad to see some solid progress. It will add a lot to the area and extend the 'downtown' towards Georgian Bay. In the winter downtown C-Wood competes with the Village at Blue for shopping and entertainment. I'm glad to see all the investment the Town has made to it's downtown (Collingwood is in Simcoe County, Blue Mtn. is in the Township of the Blue Mountains in Grey County).

When Loblaws built a few years ago, the building was designed to fit in with the street's ambiance:



They didn't do a really good job. Why no photos of how Loblaws actually meets the Town's two main streets, Hurontario and Hwy 26? Loblaws is well ahead of the other large grocery chains in terms of architecture and urban design, but here they really missed the boat!
They didn't do a really good job. Why no photos of how Loblaws actually meets the Town's two main streets, Hurontario and Hwy 26? Loblaws is well ahead of the other large grocery chains in terms of architecture and urban design, but here they really missed the boat!

That, I agree on. This is "contextual" in only the most token/euphemistic way, and esp. egregious given the location. (Though being a "Loblaw Greatfood" means it befits Blue Mountain toniness, i presume.)

Otherwise, re The Shipyards et it just me, or does the kind of New Urbanist vernacular that seems too stiff-collared for the inner 416 (cf. the Greenwood Racetrack redevelopment) actually wind up feeling old-shoe comfy in "small town Ontario"? (cf. downtown Port Credit, or even the stuff at the bottom of Liverpool Road in Pickering)
I hope you didn't get too much dust and aged mold on you when bumping this thread, goodness...