Across from a development that we looked at yesterday in Toronto's High Park area, Minto Properties GTA has also received the zoning approval for a similar project. On either side of Pacific Avenue, Minto and GWL are proposing to add new buildings in amongst the existing buildings of the “Tower-in-the-Park” sites that were a popular urban planning approach in Toronto in the 60s and 70s.

Rendering – Tower A – View from Pacific Avenue (South-West corner). Image courtesy of the architects, WZMH.

While many neighbourhood residents and the High Park Community Alliance contested what they feared as a doubling of density for the area, the City was also concerned about the degree of intensification proposed and did not approve either plan within the timeframe required. The developers each appealed the proposals to what was then the Ontario Municipal Board (now the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal) but continued to work with the City towards a settlement. Earlier this year the LPAT approved the settlements in principle. Here, the Zoning By-law Amendments will allow for 720 new purpose-built rental apartment units on the Minto Lands. Minto has now applied for Site Plan Approval for the plan.

Aerial Photo. The ‘subject site’ is comprised of properties municipally known as 111 Pacific Avenue, 255 Glenlake Avenue and 66 Oakmount Road. Image courtesy of WND Associates.

The 2.3ha subject site is located a short distance from the intersection of Bloor Street West and Keele Street, on a through lot with frontages on Pacific Avenue and Oakmount Road, and Glenlake Avenue to the north. The area is experiencing significant changes both within the High Park neighbourhood and the surrounding area.

There are currently 750 units spread among the three existing buildings of 12, 17, and 23 storeys on the site. The original December, 2016 plan by Hariri Pontarini Architects propsoed towers of 33 and 29 storeys, an 8-storey mid-rise, three blocks of 3-storey townhomes, and a 2-storey amenities building. A total of 768 new suites would be found in the new buildings, while the parking garage was proposed to expand from 602 to 1,022 spaces.

Site Plan. New construction in BLUE: two blocks of 3‐storey townhouses, one 33‐storey tower with 3‐storey townhouse units at grade and service building at rear, and one 29‐storey tower with 8‐storey podium, 2‐storey townhouses units at grade, and amenity pavilion in the rear. Image courtesy of WZMH.

Now designed by WZMH Architects, the redevelopment proposal includes 32 and 25-storey towers, a 5-storey podium, a two-storey amenity building, and one block of five 3-storey townhomes amongst the existing buildings which will be retained. Along Glenlake Avenue where two blocks of townhomes were proposed to be built, 1,419 m² of land will now be dedicated to the City as parkland. The proposed buildings will contain 720 residential dwelling units, resulting in a total of 1,470 new and existing rental units across the site. The existing Floor Space Index for the site is 2.40, which would rise to 4.586 across the 22,726 m² site.

Rendering – Tower B – View from Oakmount Road. Image courtesy of the architects, WZMH.

A total of 735 parking spaces for residents and visitors is proposed to be located within a modified and expanded underground garage, along with some surface parking. Retail space proposed along Pacific Avenue at the southerly end of the site in the original proposal has been dropped in the new proposal.

Rendering – Tower A – Street Level from Pacific Avenue. Image courtesy of the architects, WZMH.

The proposed development seeks to revitalize the physical environment for the existing residents through the introduction of new indoor and outdoor amenity spaces, gathering spaces and landscaped areas, an improved parking garage, additional bicycle parking spaces, and rationalized loading spaces that are screened from the public realm.


Angular plane. Image courtesy of the architects, WZMH.

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:  Ferris + Associates Inc., Figure3, Gradient Wind Engineers & Scientists, Minto Communities GTA, Snaile Inc., WZMH Architects