Residences at the RCMI Condos | 135m | 42s | Tribute Communities | Zeidler

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Public Meeting on 426 University Ave. and 210 Simcoe St.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008
7:00 – 9:00 PM
City Hall, 100 Queen St. W., Committee Room 2

This public meeting, hosted by the City of Toronto Planning, will be to present proposals for 426 University Ave (the Royal Canadian Military Institute) and 210 Simcoe Street.
 

BobBob

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There's a recent Globe+Mail article which talks about parking provisions in condos and mentions at length what must be this project:


Car sharing in condos
http://www.nationalpost.com/todays_paper/story.html?id=859722

Parking. It's a bad word these days.

Or so says Scott McLellan, the senior vice-president of sales and marketing for Tribute Communities. While he may be exaggerating, he does say that parking -- at least in the city's downtown buildings -- isn't the must-have for condo buyers that it once was. In fact, with gas prices going up and the environmental costs of driving becoming better known, many condo buyers who live and work downtown are choosing not to own cars at all.

"In the last few years, we've actually had situations where people were buying units and asking what the credit would be on a parking space," Mr. McLellan says.

To give buyers an alternative to having their own cars and parking spots, many Toronto condo developers are partnering with car-sharing companies. For residents, it means they have a vehicle on hand to use just when they need it; for developers, it can mean extra points toward Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification, as well as special trade-offs with the city to include fewer parking spaces than otherwise required.

"There are a lot of new condos doing it. I get a call basically every day from a developer," says Kevin McLaughlin, president of AutoShare, a Toronto-based car-sharing program, with vehicles in more than 100 locations across the city. "It's about reacting to the change in demand for parking. And I think that the demand -- especially downtown -- for parking is plummeting. They react to this by looking at ways to build less parking. One of the ways the city is agreeing to reduce the parking rates is by including AutoShare on site."

While the city mandates a certain amount of parking in each building, it is negotiable. Generally, developers are offered a 10-car parking reduction for every AutoShare car they introduce. That, Mr. Mc-Laughlin says, can add up to significant savings -- money that would be ill spent digging more underground parking if buyers aren't going to want it. "They say, why spend a million bucks to build [another] half layer of parking?" he says. "That's pretty big savings."

At Tribute's new Queen and Portland condominium site, the developer has reduced the amount of parking already. While downtown buildings average about a 60% to 70% ratio between parking spots to suites, Mr. McLellan says, Queen and Portland is closer to 50%. They're also in talks with AutoShare to introduce the car-sharing program to the project, as well as to their newest site -- an unnamed condominium building at University and Queen. There, in fact, the developer wants to go one step further, eliminating parking altogether. Currently, Tribute's negotiating with the city to do just that. "There, physically, you can't go underground," Mr. McLellan says. "[The city] really wants people to use public transportation. We're right on a subway line; right on the University subway line; we're right on the Queen Street streetcar."

And, of course, more people using public transportation means fewer cars on the road and less pollution, for a more environmentally friendly lifestyle, Mr. McLaughlin says.

"On average, every car-sharing member reduces their CO2 output by over a ton per year," he adds.
 

DaninToronto

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Problem is it's getting harder to distinguish one from another. I think if we laid them all side by side, with no names, it would be hard to identify which was which for the most part.
 

3Dementia

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Only 42 storeys but just 18 feet or so shy of joining the 500 foot club... to the tip of the architectural fin (approx 146/147 meters).

If you zoom in to the elevation at grade it looks like this giant is supported by two lonely, exhausted corinthian columns.
 

canarob

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This project looks like 439 University (right across the street) with balconies.

url
 

interchange42

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This plan would seem to treat the original RCMI building at its base at least as poorly as Daniels' High Park Condominiums design by Graziani & Corazza does the Third Church of Christ Scientist at its base. There appears to be no architectural relationship between the proposed tower and the existing building, other than that of an upstart oppressor capturing and holding this two floor remnant of the past under its foot. Besides all of the other planning questions that this building raises, it really needs to be brought to a Design Review Panel. I would be surprised to hear that what we are looking at here is an aA design - it seems to artless and insensitive to be one.

42
 

ProjectEnd

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I like it. Its anorexic proportions from the east and west remind me of the phenominal One Madison Park tower in New York. And kudos to the designers for eliminating parking etc., since this tower is less than 50 feet from St. Patrick stn.
 

jn_12

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Not sure if its been mentioned but they do want to try and be at least LEED Silver status, but their ultimate goal is GOLD. Also, Vaughn is very much in agreement with the absence of parking spots. From the renderings I saw at the Oct 21st meeting, it doesn't seem like the old building is being oppressed at all. In fact I think especially along the sides of the building, the building will be much improved and returned to its original state.
 

Solaris

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there is no way that I can't see the appropriate rationale to support a 42 storey 312 residential unit building ... thats crazy ... even if it is downtown easily accessible to subway ... IMO of course
 

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