A proposal is seeking an Official Plan Amendment, Zoning Bylaw Amendments, and Site Plan Approval for a new University of Toronto graduate student residence at 40 Harbord Street, just east of Spadina. The proposal brings Los Angeles-based Michael Maltzan Architecture on as design architect, working with Toronto-based architectsAlliance as Architect of Record, responsible to the U of T for the design and delivery of the project. ERA Architects are consulting regarding heritage issues. 

Site of the proposal, image via submission to City of Toronto

The ten-storey, red brick residence with an avant-garde geometric style and that could be described as Neo-PostModernism, would replace a row of two-storey Victorians between the U of T's Graduate House and Wolfond Centre. Addressed from 40 through 56 Harbord, they contain less than six rental units, meaning that the developer is not obligated to build replacement units. As a result, the student housing component represents the only units planned for the site.

Site of the proposal, image via Google Street View

In place of the existing buildings, the 10-storey project would meet the street with a three-storey podium with a lobby, amenity space including event space, offices, and a food hall that would be open to the general public. Seven levels of student residence units are proposed above, with a total of 203 student beds spread across 140 units. The total rise of the building would measure 34.9 metres high including the mechanical penthouse level.

Looking west on Harbord Street to New Harbord Residence, image via submission to City of Toronto

The relatively conventional massing would be clad in a striking red brick exterior, with the north and south elevations to bear a pattern of inset brick bevels framing punched windows. The west elevation facing the adjacent Graduate House would be left unadorned, while the east elevation would feature a brick treatment broken up with playful geometric cutouts framing curtainwall glazing reveals.  

Looking southwest from Living Lane to New Harbord Residence, image via submission to City of Toronto

Additional information and images can be found in our Database file for the project, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum thread, or leave a comment in the field below.

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Related Companies:  architectsAlliance, entro, Jablonsky, Ast and Partners, NAK Design Strategies