Across River Street from Toronto's revitalizing Regent Park neighbourhood, a 38-storey residential tower proposed by Broccolini on the northeast corner at Labatt Avenue now boasts a completely new design. Proposed in 2017 with a design by IBI Group83 River Street had initially been slated to contain 410 units across a volume accented by stacked volumes framed by black and white ribbons. A Site Plan Approval application submitted this May, however, details a number of changes to the proposal, including a reduction in height and the amount of units.

Comparison between the previous and current designs for 83 River, image via submission to the City of Toronto

The site is currently characterized by four two-storey semi-detached dwellings at 83-97 River Street and a standalone building occupying a double lot at 2-4 Labatt Avenue. Official Plan and Zoning Bylaw Amendment applications were recommended for refusal by City staff, who cited issues related to non-conformity with the Queen-River Secondary Plan, which had proposed to designate the subject site under the 'Neighbourhoods' classification. After adoption by City Council, the Secondary Plan was appealed by multiple parties, including the applicant.

The revised design for 83 River Street, image via submission to the City of Toronto

City Council endorsed a settlement respecting the Secondary Plan at its July, 2019 meeting, designating the subject site under 'Mixed Use Areas' with permissions for a tall building. The LPAT approved the settlement in January, 2020 and an Official Plan Amendment application for the development is now no longer required.

East and west building elevations, image via submission to the City of Toronto

Multiple revisions have been made to the proposal, with Broccolini seeking Site Plan Approval for a shorter 34-storey, 112-metre-tall building. The height of the podium has also been reduced, dropping two storeys from seven to five. Whereas the previous version of the project had envisioned townhouse units on the ground floor along River Street, the updated version imagines 225 square metres of at-grade retail.

North and south building elevations, image via submission to the City of Toronto

The total number of units has been reduced from 410 to 385, corresponding with a drop in residential floor area from 29,722 to 23,237 m². There would be 84 studios, 143 one-bedrooms, 118 two-bedrooms and 40 three-bedroom units.

West elevation of the podium, image via submission to the City of Toronto

Total amenity space—to be located across the second, third, and sixth floors—has increased from 1,421 to 1,540 m². The revised proposal calls for four full levels of underground parking and one partial level for a total of 105 vehicular spaces and 385 bicycle spaces.

A 150 m² public park space and a 84 m² privately-owned publicly-accessible space (POPS) have also been proposed at the southern edge of the site. The original application had no such plans for public parkland nor accessible open spaces.

South elevation of the podium, image via submission to the City of Toronto

The revised development forgoes the ribbon-like curvilinear bands that accented the original design, opting instead for a simplified rectangular form. An oblique, protruding architectural feature begins on the ground floor along the River Street frontage, framing the retail entrances and climbing the tower to its 117.5-metre sloping apex. The east elevation also sports this architectural treatment, but starting only from the podium rooftop. Balconies will be contained within the architectural feature frames on the east and west elevations, while a series of inset balconies are proposed on the north and south facades.

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:  Arcadis, Bousfields, Broccolini, EQ Building Performance Inc., Gradient Wind Engineers & Scientists, HGC Engineering Inc, Jablonsky, Ast and Partners, MCW Consultants Ltd, New Release Condo, Patton Design Studio, Platinum Condo Deals, STUDIO tla