Now long gone, but not forgotten by most Torontonians, is the former Sam The Record Man store at Yonge and Gould Streets in Downtown Toronto. Sam Sniderman moved his iconic record store to its flagship location at Yonge and Gould back in 1961, where it stood as a mecca for music lovers until its much-publicized closure in 2007. The shop was an institution in the world of Canadian music, and its two-storey tall neon signs were a well-known landmark on Yonge Street for decades.

Sam the Record Man, December 30 2007, image by Edward Skira

Demolition of the building got going back in 2009, to make way for what would become the Snøhetta and Zeidler Partnership Architects-designed Ryerson Student Learning Centre. Our before photo was captured in December 2007, shortly after the closure of Sam the Record Man. On the far right of the photo above, we can see the north wall of the Empress Hotel, a late 19th century commercial building which has also since disappeared from its Yonge and Gould location.

Returning to the site today, we can see that construction of the new 155,000 square-foot Ryerson Student Learning Centre is now wrapping up with the application of final exterior details in advance of its opening later this year. With the Empress Hotel lost to arson in 2011, the right side of the 2015 photo below now reveals a clearer view through to the back walls of 10 Dundas East.

The Ryerson Student Learning Centre, January 8 2015, image by Jack Landau

We turn to a view from the south for a better look at the new eight-storey Ryerson facility, where installation of the textured blue soffit continues above the main entrance.

The Ryerson Student Learning Centre, January 8 2015, image by Jack Landau

We will return next week with another look at the changing face of Toronto!

Related Companies:  EllisDon, entro, LiveRoof Ontario Inc, Ryerson University, Snøhetta, Zeidler Partnership Architects