The Queensway in Etobicoke has seen many development proposals submitted to the City of Toronto for rezoning over the last few years. Today we'll look at six proposals along the south side of The Queensway on either side of Islington Avenue, and their paths to approval. What nearly all of them have in common is that their proposed height – most in the ballpark of 15 storeys – weren't allowed, with the City opting for humbler heights for the neighbourhood. 

Two developments reached settlement with the City at the May Council meeting. They are 875 The Queensway and 1045 The Queensway, which appealed to the OMB/LPAT/OLT when the City did not respond to their proposals within the prescribed time frame, but settled with the City prior to their hearings.

Developed by Format Group, the original proposal of 875 The Queensway asked for 14 storeys and 138 residential units, with 159 parking spaces. The settlement reached with the City though is for 11 storeys. While its units rose to 148, its parking was reduced to 130 spaces. The total GFA is now 18,894m², resulting in a density of 5.44 FSI. 

875 The Queensway, designed by KFA Architects and Planners for Format Group

1045 The Queensway had a similar experience. The conjoint Marlin Spring DevelopmentsAltree Developments, and Greybrook Realty Partners development also experienced a storey cut via a settlement at May Council – being reduced from 14 to 12. Units were reduced from 325 to 284, and parking spaces from 212 to 209. The total gross floor area of the new building is now 23,328m², amounting to an overall density of 5.95 FSI. 

Looking south to 1045 The Queensway, designed by Graziani + Corazza Architects for Marlin Spring

Between those two at 935 The QueenswayMattamy Homes had initially sought 16 storeys, but ultimately settled with the City at 10 at the December, 2021 Council meeting. The unit count decreased from 227 to 210, and the total number of parking spaces decreased from 238 to 193. The design of the building also changed dramatically from the original submission, doing away with the white, curved edges in exchange for a multi-tonal brown structure with hard edges. 

935 The Queensway, previous design by TACT Architecture for Mattamy Homes

935 The Queensway, new design by TACT Architecture for Mattamy Homes

An earlier proposal that started construction in the area before it got zoning approval was 859 The Queensway. Developers First Avenue Properties and Latch Developments proposed 14 storeys here and had permits to build to a certain height, but were eventually cut back via settlement to 11 storeys, and had to cancel sales for suites on the uppermost floors. This building currently stands nine storeys tall, with construction having resumed. The 187-suite project's gross floor area will be 16,222m², resulting in an FSI of 4.23.

Most recent construction at 859 The Queensway, image by UT Forum contributor bangkok

At 801 The Queensway, being marketed as Curio Condos, developer Marlin Spring did not appeal its proposal to the OLT, but got approval through the normal planning process. First submitted at 11 storeys, a resubmission to the City was approved at 10. The project is currently selling, with this rendering having been recently realsed:

Curio Condos, Toronto, designed by Graziani + Corazza Architects for Marlin Spring

In comparison to these projects, in amongst them at the intersection of The Queensway and Islington Avenue, RioCan REIT's Verge Condos got its tallest volume approved at 17 storeys. There are a couple factors as to why this was allowed; 1) the lot that this development sits on is significantly deeper than any of the other projects, allowing for its height to be increased as a result of the ability for the massing to include larger step-backs, and 2) its location where two arterial roads meet qualifies it to take advantage of a height peak that the City likes to see at major intersections.

Verge Condos designed by Turner Fleischer Architects for RioCan REIT

Verge, beside surface parking lots associated with the Cineplex flagship Queensway Cinemas (out of frame at the bottom of the image below) has recently had its site cleared, and will be staring construction in the near future. 

Current look at the site of Verge Condos, image by UT Forum contributor bangkok

There are also a number of proposals along the north side of The Queensway in this stretch, including Kazmir Condos as an example at 880 The Queensway.

On the north side, the developments all back onto a low-rise, mostly single family home neighbourhood, and the lots are shallower as well. For those reasons, the proposals on the north side have been shorter, like this one, proposed at and ultimately settled with the City for eight storeys. Similar to most south side projects, developer Lormel Homes appealed to the OMB/LPAT/OLT after the City had not made a timely decision, and continued negotiations with the City resulted in a settlement that Council endorsed. The suites here are now substantially sold, and building permits were applied for in April.

Kazmir Condos, designed by RAW Design for Lormel Homes

More information on these developments will come soon, but in the meantime, you can learn more from our Database files for the projects, 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:  Altree Developments, Arcadis, Bousfields, Counterpoint Engineering, DesignAgency, Entuitive, EQ Building Performance Inc., Ferris + Associates Inc., Graziani + Corazza Architects, Greybrook Realty Partners, Groundwater Environmental Management Services Inc. (GEMS), LEA Consulting, Live Patrol Inc., Mattamy Homes, MHBC Planning, NAK Design Strategies, NEEZO Studios, RAW Design, RioCan Living, SKYGRiD, TCS Marketing Systems, Turner Fleischer Architects, Unilux HVAC Industries Inc., Urban Strategies Inc.