Agreed. And the heritage buildings will be seriously compromised by the placement of a tower OVER top of the fine Edwardian buildings at 68 and 70 Charles St. E. This kind of bricolage is ugly and disruptive--can you say RCMI on University? It also destroys that most vital of things, quality of life. Turning the corner from hectic, traffic-heavy Sherbourne St. onto Charles St. heading west, you feel a weight come off your shoulders. The low-rise apartments are pleasing because of their manageable scale, fine detail, and eye-soothing natural materials and colours. They tell us how people lived and create a warm, inviting streetscape. This is about our past and our present, including HOW WE FEEL WHEN WE WALK DOWN THE STREET!!!!!
Glass towers are about as impersonal and monotone as it gets. Our real lives happen at street-level, not at 40+ storey towers that copy one another with no regard for style or substance. Yet while I was highly dismayed to see the signs regarding the development proposal, it wasn't that surprising. This seems to be the path we're on in T.O., and despite protection of certain heritage features in this particular proposal, the changes will alter the beauty and feel of the street. At this pace (and with fires claiming other properties), pretty soon, we'll have no idea of the historic city, which can never be retrieved once it's gone.
To say that historic buildings have to make way for change is so short-sighted. The most satisfying, compelling architecture--and the best human experience--can often be found in historic structures. Paris and Rome know a thing or two about NOT doing away with their past. And so do the millions of tourists who travel thousands of kilometres to seek that experience in those cities every year.