New renderings of 1 Eglinton East, a proposed 68-storey mixed use retail-office-condo tower by Davpart Inc. on the southeast corner of Yonge Street and Eglinton Avenue are given us a much better picture of what the building would look like were it to be built as currently envisioned. Unveiled on May 11 at a community consultation in Toronto's Midtown area, the Hariri Pontarini Architects-designed building which was first seen in 3D elevations in February of this year, has now been rendered in much greater detail and placed into its urban context.

Looking south towards 1 Eglinton East, designed by Hariri Pontarini Architects for Davpart Inc.

The building, which would replace an 8-storey office building currently on the site, features a sculpted facade which partially wraps upper residential floors in balconies while it pulls back to reveal most of the offices on levels 3 through 9. On upper floors the wrap disappears, helping the reflectively-glazed top portion of the building to disappear into the sky. The building is designed to fit within Toronto's Tall Buildings Guidelines and the principles set out in an area study being completed currently called 'Midtown in Focus'.

In the building's ground realm zone, the design focuses attention on retail and restaurant space on the ground and second levels which face the corner of Yonge and Eglinton, already amongst the liveliest pedestrian crossings in the city. Expected to be completed after the Crosstown LRT, some traffic, especially buses, will have come off of the streets here before 1 Eglinton East could open. The development will be directly connected to the Subway-LRT interchange station via a pedestrian tunnel.

The podium at 1 Eglinton East, designed by Hariri Pontarini Architects for Davpart Inc.

1 Eglinton East is proposed to be pulled 10 metres back from the sidewalk along Yonge Street for approximately 24 metres, creating a public piazza which could be used as open space available for occasional programming, or restaurant patio space, or a combination of both. The second storey will feature a wrap-around balcony on the two main frontages, intended as restaurant outdoor dining space and accessible from inside the building naturally but also from stairs in the southwest and northeast corners of the site. Canopies and edges in the building's shape are meant to abate winds enough to keep outdoor activities around the base of the building comfortable in normal weather conditions.

Public piazza and restaurant balcony space will add to the animation at Yonge and Eglinton, image courtesy of Davpart

Vehicular access to the building would be from Cowbell Lane, a north-south lane running between Yonge Street and Holly Street. The design here carves a notch out of the podium to provide a sheltered two-storey high drop-off area large enough to hold five cars, while access to the loading and servicing docks and to the underground garage would be accomplished south of the drop-off.

Residential entry area at 1 Eglinton East, designed by Hariri Pontarini Architects for Davpart Inc.

A number of concerns were raised by neighbours in attendance, including regarding traffic both in terms of the number of vehicles already using Cowbell Lane and the further strain that this project could put on already overburdened transit infrastructure. Some community members want more office space than just the first 9 storeys here, with local Councillor Josh Matlow pointing out that improving the office ratio in the complex will reduce the number of locals leaving the area during the workday.

There was no agreement on height, with some in attendance wanting the height of the building cut dramatically, or to something more in keeping with the 50-ish storey buildings to the north and south, while others had no problem with 68 storeys. Some community members want to see some space for community facilities in the building. Several community members urged Davpart to reenter negotiations to purchase the adjacent property on Yonge Street which would allow the proposal to be moved south some metres, opening more space for the Eglinton Avenue sidewalk. Architect David Pontarini was applauded for the building's articulated and sleek design.

We will look more closely at the facts and figures of 1 Eglinton East as the design proceeds through the planning process. If you want to know more about the proposal now, check out our dataBase file for the project, linked below, for more renderings. If you want to talk about the development, choose the associated Forum link to get in on the discussion or add your comment in the space provided on this page.

Related Companies:  Davpart, Hariri Pontarini Architects