Toronto Forma | 308m | 84s | Great Gulf | Gehry Partners

"Just cause a building is old doesn't mean it matters."

This is true however building age, like location, is a potentially intrinsic souce of value. Something being new is not a source of intrinsic value because you can always build more new stuff. A famous designer (such as in this case) is in my opinion a pseudo-source of intrinsic value because fashion tastes change over time. Most of the catalogue of Gehry's buildings will not survive into the next century. This is not a knock on the architect or his designs, history just suggests this will be the case. At the ever accelerating speed of urbanization and urban renewal around the globe I expect that maybe 50 years will be considered a good run for a building to survive even by our most famous contemporary designers.

I am humbled by your foresight, predicting with such certainty Gehry's buildings won't survive until the next century.

So let me get this right:

a) Famous designers offer pseudo-value because tastes change? So everything you see from the past is worthless?
b) His buildings won't survive, 'because history just suggests this to be the case' - what?
c) Urban renewal is not accelerating in Canada, its slowing. No reason to conclude everything is going in the dumpster. Or are you saying the warehouses are destined for the dumpster anyway.

Think about the logic of your arguments before trying to wax philisophical. It takes years of expereince to match adma's sophistry :)
 
"That's pure conjecture with no actual basis in fact"

Interchange42, my comment may have been conjecture or exaggeration but it does have root in facts. Frank Lloyd Wright is a perfect example actually. Maybe 55-60 of his buildings, including many of his most architectural significant buildings, have already been demolished or destroyed in the approximately 60 years since their completion. The Martin house in Buffalo, which I had the pleasure of visiting a few years ago, was saved from turning into a parking lot by a little luck and the help of the Japanese. It's still undergoing rebuilding and parts of it were very poorly preserved and barely survived.

I say this not because I want to prove that famous architecture is irrelevent. I say this because I believe famous architecture only endows a building with pseudo-intrinsic value because fashions change and what is admired changes over time. Furthermore, I am speculating that the amount of time it takes before fashions change and buildings created by contemporary architects (famous or not) are demolished or fundamentally altered is accelerating.

The reason why this point is relevent is that basically what we are debating here is the relative weight or balance of priorities. Most people would love to have another Frank Gehry structure here in the city (I for example like his AGO expansion). The question is is this King Street project in it's current form worth it? Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. But the question of who is very central to many of our feelings either way. If I designed these buildings as seen in the rendering and you never heard of me would that alter the equation on your feelings on the project?
 
Last edited:
Still no settlement available to the public. We should get something from Adam Vaughan tomorrow though. Could the delay indicate a complex settlement agreement or possibly no settlement at all and the fight proceeds to the OMB? Suspenseful!

Stay tunned
 
Still no settlement available to the public. We should get something from Adam Vaughan tomorrow though. Could the delay indicate a complex settlement agreement or possibly no settlement at all and the fight proceeds to the OMB? Suspenseful!

Stay tunned

In all likelihood it's just in queue. Council has a massive list of items to go through and it could go well into Wednesday.
 
In all likelihood it's just in queue. Council has a massive list of items to go through and it could go well into Wednesday.

It's best practice to allow some time for councillors and the public to read city staff reports before council votes on it. The city clerk lists the settlement report as being pending and due from the chief planner. Additional correspondence from today has been added by the clerk for the Mirvish+Gehry, most speaking in support of the development.

If it is a queue issue, it's on Keesmatt's end.
 
The question is is this King Street project in it's current form worth it? Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. But the question of who is very central to many of our feelings either way. If I designed these buildings as seen in the rendering and you never heard of me would that alter the equation on your feelings on the project?

I have shown this proposal to many people and by far the most have supported the project. I'd have to say most had no clue who Frank Gehry is or in the least then knew of him as an Architect but little more. Those who did had no knowledge of his history in this city. Not everyone out there is a architecture or skyscraper geek.
I don't know if this one could be a ballot issue in the next election but if it was within the city as a whole, it would be approved by a massive majority. Massive.

The buildings on this strip are destined for demolition. If not this project, then something in the future.

For whom are you preserving these warehouses? What lessons are you intending to impart? Unless your belief is that these will last forever let them go. Build something novel on a single block and it will have little effect on the area and the city.
 
Last edited:
Interchange42, my comment may have been conjecture or exaggeration but it does have root in facts. Frank Lloyd Wright is a perfect example actually. Maybe 55-60 of his buildings, including many of his most architectural significant buildings, have already been demolished or destroyed in the approximately 60 years since their completion. The Martin house in Buffalo, which I had the pleasure of visiting a few years ago, was saved from turning into a parking lot by a little luck and the help of the Japanese. It's still undergoing rebuilding and parts of it were very poorly preserved and barely survived.

Don't you mean the approximately 60 years *after* their completion? But in any case, there's something else to consider: by far the bulk of FLW demolition happened before the preservation-movement-as-we-know-it came to fruition in the 60s/70s. As a result of that paradigm shift, the # of demolished FLW buildings has dropped precipitously over the last forty years, to the point where the loss of even a resolutely "minor" work like the Mercedes showroom in NYC earlier this year comes as a shock. And when it comes to those last 40 years, at worst, the Martin House would have been the victim of abandonment/vandals/arson rather than demolition for parking...
 
I have shown this proposal to many people and by far the most have supported the project. I'd have to say most had no clue who Frank Gehry is or in the least then knew of him as an Architect but little more. Those who did had no knowledge of his history in this city. Not everyone out there is a architecture or skyscraper geek.
I don't know if this one could be a ballot issue in the next election but if it was within the city as a whole, it would be approved by a massive majority. Massive.

Ah, but there's a difference btw/presenting a raw project, and presenting a context. Once you present a context, the "massive" majority becomes not so massive--or else, if we're talking about "the city as a whole", we're also taking into account Ford Nation, the EIFS/McMansion-teardown demo, etc etc. Thus, a "tyranny of" type of "massive majority" for whom Gehry might as well be an ooh-aah ferris-wheel/monorail thing. Especially if (as per your anecdote) they had no previous clue as to who Gehry is.

In which case, when you state that "not everyone out there is a architecture or skyscraper geek", you might as well append "heritage geek" to the argument--though it's curious that you didn't even acknowledge that possibility...

Oh, And if "demolish Boston City Hall" became a ballot issue in Boston, *that* might be approved by a massive majority, too. Just warning you.
 
Last edited:

I'm sorry. I didn't realize all of these points had already been resolved perfectly already with absolutely nothing left to say.

The previous discussion was an architectural discussion about the aesthetic merits of heritage incorporation vs demolition. My point is a political one. No developer should be able to make such a huge impact on the city's built form without going to the community for input. I'd be much more supportive of this building if Mirvish had taken a more publicly-minded approach, even if the proposal ended up being basically the same architecturally.
 
My point is a political one. No developer should be able to make such a huge impact on the city's built form without going to the community for input. I'd be much more supportive of this building if Mirvish had taken a more publicly-minded approach, even if the proposal ended up being basically the same architecturally.

Just to clarify, my problem with this project is Mirvish's "my way or the highway" attitude to civic engagement:
perhaps they should go live under one of those pampered sultans in the UAE.

So i see, your beef is more to do with Mirvish and Gehry:eek:
 
all the people against these buildings is one of the reasons now and in the past we have ugly buildings so the people do have the power over whether we have nice buildings or not.
 
I'm not childishly whining, in fact you are, I'm just stating my opinion. and its true, compare our skyline and buildings to any major city in the states and toronto loses hands down every time.
 

Top