For years, the area between Harbourfront and the rail corridor in downtown Toronto has sported more than its share of surface parking lots. The late 1980s gave us WaterPark Place, our first major office complex south of the rail corridor. The 24 and 18-storey towers, completed in 1986 and 1990 respectively, are a classic example of late-20th century postmodern design, featuring distinctive ziggurat-shaped silhouettes. 23 years have passed since the cranes were removed on the 18-storey second phase, and now a new phase of the complex is well on its way to urbanizing this under-developed area.

RBC WaterPark Place III rising next to the older first and second phases, image by Jack Landau

RBC WaterPark Place III, a 30-storey office building under construction immediately west of the existing complex, is now standing at approximately 20 storeys, and roughly two thirds of the way to its final height of 460 feet. Developed by Oxford Properties, the 930,000 square-foot structure is aiming for LEED Gold Certification, with a number of energy efficient features being included throughout the facility.

Looking northwest towards RBC WPP from Queens Quay, image by Jack Landau

The WZMH Architects-designed building, which will serve as RBC's new national headquarters for its Canadian Banking business, features a clean modernist design certain to stand in contrast to the now out-of-favour postmodern style complex to the east. In the photos below, we take a closer look at the ongoing construction progress at the site.

RBC WaterPark Place III rising from Queens Quay east of York Street, image by Jack Landau

The tower seen from Queens Quay and York, image by Jack Landau

To the west of RBC WaterPark Place will be a park. The greenspace is currently surrounded by the circular off ramp from the Gardiner to York Street, but the City intends to remove than and replace it with a new off-ramp elsewhere.

RBC WaterPark Place will be connected to the sprawling PATH pedestrian system via an enclosed bridge, connecting from the Air Canada Centre and Union Station to the north. The bridge will be relatively unique in the way it passes underneath the Gardiner Expressway, but above the traffic of Lake Shore Boulevard.

Rendering of the enclosed PATH connection bridge

You can see in the image below the extra-thck concrete slab where the PATH bridge will connect across Harbour Street with the complex. The ramp shown below is similarly planned to be removed.

RBC WaterPark Place III viewed from the north side of Harbour Street, image by Jack Landau

For additional information including building facts and renderings, please visit our dataBase page, linked below.  Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated forum thread, or voice your opinion in the comments section provided below.

Related Companies:  DTAH, EllisDon, Kramer Design Associates Limited, Oxford Properties Group, RJC Engineers, WSP, WZMH Architects