Streetcar Developments, responsible for such condo loft projects as The Carnaby at Queen and Dufferin and The Carlaw and The Taylor at Dundas and Carlaw, has purchased the historic Broadview Hotel at the corner of Queen Street East and Broadview Avenue in Toronto's recently renamed Riverside neighbourhood, part of the broader Riverdale area.
Best known to the wider city as the home of Jilly's strip club, the landmark 1891-built building at 704 Queen Street East is known for its ornate, if somewhat past-its-prime, Victorian red brick exterior, which includes a fifth floor tower room overlooking the intersection.
Streetcar's President and CEO Les Mallins has stated that the company's first priority is to address significant structural issues within the building. Toronto's Buildings department issued an Emergency Work Order for immediate temporary structural measures in late 2013 in order to make the deteriorating building safe. Streetcar will take on permanent repairs swiftly, and Jilly's, whose lease was due to expire, will be vacating the property along with the hotel occupants.
While Twitter quickly lit up with '#Jillyscondos' this morning, it would appear that condos are not in the plans. "Streetcar is based in Riverside, so this neighbourhood has a special place in our hearts, and we believe this building is a jewel of Riverside," said Mallins. "Although rooted in loft development, Streetcar does not see this building as a residential condominium project. We are in the early stages of planning, but our focus is to revive this building to a landmark everyone in the area can be proud of. Streetcar has developed a number of well-known buildings in the downtown core. In every case, the company endeavours to complement the surrounding architecture and enhance the feel and livability of the community."
There has been speculation over the years that the building would make for good east end hotel in the spirit of Queen West's Drake or Gladstone hotels. What is your take on this purchase? You can leave a comment in the space provided on this page, or join in on the discussion in UrbanToronto's thread for the project, here.