The City of Toronto has received an application from Gairloch Developments seeking approval of its plans to build a new mixed-use mostly residential building on a site located in the Junction Triangle neighbourhood. The proposed development would replace the Sporting Clube Portugues de Toronto that is currently found on site at 1650 Dupont Street. The proposal includes 30 new residential units in a single mid-rise building spanning 6 floors, along with two retail/commercial units accessible at ground level from Dupont Street.

Looking northeast to 1650 Dupont, designed by Gabriel Fain Architects for Gairloch Developments

Of note, the application by Gairloch Developments is for Site Plan Approval, indicating that the proponents believe the proposal does not require Zoning By-law nor Official Plan amendments, which is rare for new developments in this city. Minor variances are being sought along with the SPA application, however, based on the architects' review of the plans against the site's zoning plus Growth Plan, Official Plan, Provincial Policy Statement, and four planning tests. 

Sporting Clube Portugues De Toronto, image by UT Forum contributor AlbertC

The site is located on the north side of Dupont Street mid-block between Osler Street and Edwin Avenue, just east of the Kitchener rail corridor. On this stretch of Dupont Street there are currently retail units, cafés, restaurants, small shops, and art galleries while low-rise residential houses are found just beyond, along with parks, schools, community centres, and places of worship. There are some commercial units located near the site, next to one of two railway corridors where auto oriented services can be found. The inclusion of ground level retail and commercial units in the building would ensure the ground level fits well with the neighbouring retail units along Dupont.

Looking northwest towards 1650 Dupont in context, designed by Gabriel Fain Architects for Gairloch Developments

Each of floors 2 through 6 would have 6 suites, 3 in the north wing and 3 in the south wing, with a courtyard between the wings, in a mix of 15 one-bedrooms, 11 two-bedrooms, and 4 three-bedrooms. Outside suites would be through-units with windows facing both north and south. In conjunction with Land Art Design, the architects propose to handle stormwater runoff via a garden area in the courtyard in which a Japanese Maple would be the focus, while also providing a social gathering space for residents. An indoor amenity space would be adjacent.

Courtyard garden at 1650 Dupont, designed by Gabriel Fain Architects and Land Art Design for Gairloch Developments

Plans are for the building to be constructed with a mass timber frame, an environmentally conscious approach that chooses renewable building materials such as wood over non-renewable materials such as steel and concrete. While the bulk of the exterior would be metal, the architects are proposing charred wood for the balcony interior faces where permitted by the Ontario Building Code. The material has been used for centuries in Japanese architecture as a way to preserve wood. Called shou-sugi-ban, its application here would be meant to add a rich texture and depth to the building's exterior.

Looking southwest to the laneway side of 1650 Dupont, designed by Gabriel Fain Architects for Gairloch Developments

As a sustainable building project with the aim of minimizing impacts on both the environment and community, the architects are proposing to avoid below grade concrete construction, eliminating an underground garage level, and proposing just 7 parking spaces in a stacker system accessed from the rear laneway. Otherwise, residents would have access to transit and cycling infrastructure in the neighbourhood. Four bike parking spots in the laneway are proposed for visitor use while 29 resident spaces would be located in a main floor bike locker.

There are other new buildings under construction within a few blocks, such as Junction House, a nine-storey development at 2720 Dundas Street West, and 299 Campbell Avenue, a 14-storey condominium which will also include rental units as well as a new Toronto Public Library branch a few blocks to the east. The new residential developments in the area will contribute to the renewal of the neighbourhood with the inclusion of retail, commercial, and institutional uses alongside the residential units, ensuring that a vibrant mixed use neighbourhood is sustained. 

You can learn more from our Database file for the project, linked below. If you'd like, 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:  EQ Building Performance Inc., Gairloch Developments, Land Art Design Landscape Architects Inc