I dunno...I think one of Toronto's biggest problems is this notion that a site should only be built out at, say, 50+ stories if it's anwhere within 10KM of Bay and King. It's one of the reasons, IMO, that even after the massive development of the current cycle there will still be a fair number of empty lots. Let's spread it around a bit at lower heights and complete the urban fabric. We're getting plenty of skyscrapers, and even if every empty site fills up there will still be more in the next cycle. Just supply and demand...
Edit: and don't forget that Paris is built out at uniformly 8 stories...and it's significantly denser than any Canadian city.
We're not Paris, and the way the city is right now the only way to ad density without kicking people out of their Victorian homes to build Parisian streetscapes is to build up. This is north America and the best example of how we should handle our downtown core would be Manhattan or Chicago, great bases, set backs and tall towers. This lot is way to close to the core and subway line that 8 stories just seems like a waste. 8 storey's East of church or west of Spadina is fine. Lets go North American verticle in the core and European dense outside of that. Within 1 or two blocks from a transit hub should be classified as super high density 25+ floors, 3-6 blocks high density and beyond that is up for discussion.
That lot needs some serious TLC though, the shops and restaurants across the street are gems and feel like they inhabit one of the last neglected sections of the downtown core. An 8 floor building here would just be for the elite.
Why doesn't the city with the few remaining outer lots in the core say that builders must provide some space at a lower cost to cultural venues, for example art galleries, museums, theatre etc. instead of art installations (only in the core). This would really ad life to an area.
No matter what you say, you just can't ad the density that site deserves and the city requires in 8 floors. I don't need a skyscraper at every corner but this site is the right place for one. 8 floors will barely crest the roofs of the 5 storey century old buildings across the street from it.
My condo newsletter indicates Great Gulf has submitted a proposal to the city for this lot. A high-rise that the condo people intend to fight because of the "proposed height" and the fact that it fails to respect the "heritage character of the neighbourhood". I'll report further when I hear more.