The earliest stages of construction are unfolding for what is sure to become a prominent landmark on Toronto's King Street West. As demolition of some parts of the existing buildings on the site continues, the arrival of shoring rigs is marking the start of construction for Westbank Corp and Allied Properties REIT's KING Toronto, a 16-storey mountain range-shaped luxury condominium complex from acclaimed Danish architects Bjarke Ingels Group and Toronto based Diamond Schmitt Architects.

Looking northwest across site of KING Toronto, image by Forum contributor Red Mars

Heavy equipment arrived on site late last year to begin demolition of a low-rise restaurant/club building occupying a portion of the site. Next to go was a two-and-a-half-storey office building at 539 King West, taken down entirely within the month of February. It was followed by the teardown of the rear sections of a pair of four-storey heritage buildings at 489 and 511-529 King West, with the preserved sections fronting King Street to live on within the base of the new complex.

Looking north across site of KING Toronto, image by Forum contributor Red Mars

At 495 King West, a three-storey factory building set back from King at the site's southeast corner, is planned to be largely retained with major interior modifications and the removal and eventual reconstruction of exterior elevations to support construction.

Looking east across site of KING Toronto, image by Forum contributor Red Mars

A view facing northeast across the site shows that demolition is gradually removing sections of the five-storey building at 489 King West. The building's southwest corner has been removed, a section to extend north in the coming weeks. The building's south and east portions will remain at the complex's eastern bookend, with floors reconfigured to line up with the new building.

Demolition at 489 King West, image by Forum contributor Red Mars

With much of the site cleared, and demolition still ongoing for remaining sections, the first drilling rigs arrived at the work site in mid-May to begin the project's shoring phase. In the weeks since, drilling has progressed for boreholes around the site perimeter, which will be filled in to form underground retaining walls that will hold back the surrounding soil during excavation. Ongoing shoring activities will set the stage for the upcoming excavation phase, which will dig three levels below grade to carve out space for the complex's foundations and underground garage levels.

Shoring along the site's King frontage, image by Forum contributor AHK

The project will have 54,709 m² of gross floor area, broken down into 35,637 m² of residential space, 9,472 m² of retail space, and 9,600 m² of office space. Residential suites are coming in a mix of 95 studios, 203 one-bedrooms, 96 two-bedrooms, and 46 three-bedroom units.

KING Toronto, image via submission to City of Toronto

You can learn more from our Database file for the project, linked below. If you'd like to, you can join in on the conversation in the associated Project Forum thread, or leave a comment in the space provided on this page.

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Related Companies:  Allied Properties REIT, Claude Cormier + Associés, Diamond Schmitt Architects, RJC Engineers, Sweeny &Co Architects Inc.