Close by where Lawrence Avenue crosses the Humber River in northwestern Toronto, Weston is seeing little wave of revitalization roll in. Weston GO staton was expanded and bridges were built as the rail corridor was widened and lowered into a trench and tunnel through the area a few years ago, in conjunction with Metrolinx's new UP Express service between Union Station and Pearson Airport. While that was going on, concerns that the community generally needed reinvestment, more specifically new housing, affordable housing, and a community arts hub led to the vision for Weston Common. Now, 28 months after ground was broken, a soon-to-complete mixed-use 30-storey tower rises into the air, and a complex that has stood at the site for over 40 years is being rejuvenated.
At the north end of the site, 33 King is a 26-storey rental tower owned by Woodbourne Capital. It was built with a sizeable above-ground garage, where the ground floor was to have thousands of square feet of retail. Sitting back from Weston Road, that retail was never built-out. This space was perfect for live-work units for artists and there families, and for the community arts hub. Artscape is ow preparing to finish that.
As part of the improvements to the area, much of the vast red brick walls of the garage are now being painted bright blocks of colour. While there have been some impressive new murals painted on walls in the city recently, it's very rare to see colour so boldly used here to enliven buildings and break down their bulk. The reasons for that here include most obviously Toronto's famous reserve, but in cities generally with warmer climates—and more above ground garages—like Los Angeles and Miami, large blocks of colour are much more common sights.
Besides the bold new paint job, there's lots of other work continuing at the site, including finishing a bridge connecting the older building to the new one. That 30-storey tower, designed by Graziani + Corazza Architects for the Rockport Group is racing towards a completion target for the coming months.
We will keep you updated as construction wraps up. For more information, make sure to check out our associated dataBase file, linked below, or any of the earlier stories. Want to share your thoughts on the project? Feel free to leave a comment in the space below this page, or join in the discussion in our associated Forum thread.
|Related Companies:||Artscape, Bousfields, City of Toronto, entro, GCB interior architecture inc., Graziani + Corazza Architects, McIntosh Perry, RJC Engineers, Rockport Group, Terraplan/Studio TLA|