On the south side of Queens Quay between Sherbourne and Parliament streets, a new neighbourhood is starting to take shape beside Toronto Harbour. Named Bayside when Waterfront Toronto began to carve up for redevelopment the parcels of land it oversees, developers Tridel and Hines' 5.3 hectare (13 acre) project will soon see the first of several phases of their plan open. Bayside will bring 2,000,000 ft² of residential, office, retail, and cultural space to former industrial port land in Toronto's East Bayfront.
The community's initial residential phase—a 13-storey condominium development called Aqualina designed by Miami-based Arquitectonica—began construction in the spring of 2014, and is now coming close to completion. With the building's exterior envelope practically complete, work continues within the building to prepare its 363 condominium suites and retail spaces for occupancy.
To the immediate east of Aqualina, construction of the 12-storey Aquavista began in late 2015 with shoring. Featuring a complementary design and massing—also by Arquitectonica—the project's excavation was completed by mid-2016, with a tower crane installed at the base of the pit in August last year. By early 2017, the project had reached ground level, with the first above-grade structural columns appearing in late March. Now, with summer just around the corner, work has begun on the second floor of the building.
As forming continues above grade, plumbing, electrical rough-in work, drain installation, and waterproofing, are all well underway for the building's underground levels. The completed building will add 228 condominium units and 80 affordable rental units—to be operated by Artscape—to the nascent waterfront community, as well as ground floor retail.
The third phase of condominiums, Aquabella at Bayside, will rise east of Aquavista, but with a new park between the two. (More on the park later in the article.) Marketing of the luxury Aquabella condo kicked off last year when it was announced that Denmark-based 3XN architects had won a design competition for the building. Projected to be complete in late 2020, Aquabella will stand 14 storeys above Toronto Harbour, bringing 173 condominium units and even more retail to the area, much of it, like at Aquavista, with waterfront views.
While residential density is an important first step in building a community, employment space is also necessary if you want an area to be lively during daytime hours too. To that end, the Bayside community will eventually boast two nine-storey office buildings with a combined total of 430,000 ft² of office space, to be known as Queens Quay Place at Bayside. Designed by Pelli Clark Pelli Architects with Adamson Associates Architect, the project will incorporate a landscaped plaza with ground level retail, and is being designed to meet LEED Gold status.
Public space is another important component in community building, so along with an extension of the much-loved Water's Edge Promenade, a neighbourhood green space named Aitken Place Park is planned. Designed by Scott Torrance Landscape Architect with Thomas Balsley Associates, the 0.75-acre space will be positioned between Aquavista and Aquabella, and is being named in honour of Alexander Aitken, a surveyor who mapped out the Town of York in 1793.
We will stay up-to-date on happenings in the area, but in the meantime if you'd like to know more, additional information and renderings for the various projects mentioned in this article can be found in the Database files, linked below. Want to get in on the discussion? Check out the associated Forum threads, or leave a comment using the field provided at the bottom of this page.