The development team of QuadReal Property Group and bcIMC enjoyed one of the early celebratory moments in the life of any urban development, hosting a ground breaking ceremony to toast the start of construction of their purpose-built rental development, 30 Merton Street. Located in Toronto’s Davisville Village neighbourhood, the project is now officially on its way to becoming a 37-storey tower designed by Sweeny &Co Architects, with the promise of 322 rental units set to bring some relief to a City facing a critical lack of rental housing. 

Development team drives shovels into the earth at celebratory ground breaking event for 30 Merton Street, image by UT Forum contributor Wysiwyg

“As long-term institutional developers and managers, QuadReal can make a difference in Toronto and across Canada when it comes to providing housing both now and into the future,” said Aaron Knight, Vice President of Development at Quadreal. Managing nearly 40 million square feet of commercial real estate in Canada, the venture into residential development, specifically with a rental building, is a timely gesture recognizing the urgency for companies on all sides of the industry to get involved in one of this City’s most pertinent crises: housing. 

Looking northeast at the complete design for the 37-storey 30 Merton development, image from submission to City of Toronto

Demolition began in July to clear the site for the start of construction, removing the concrete parking structure that had occupied the site previously. By mid-August, the 3-storey structure had been completely leveled, but work continued until mid-October to level the site and remove the rubble in preparation for shoring. Since that time, the site has been quiet while the City processes the building permits that will allow shoring to commence.

Looking northwest at demolition of parking garage on site, image by UT Forum contributor Wysiwyg

The design of the tower has evolved throughout the planning process, with the finalized version, put forward just over a year ago, displayed in the latest set of renderings. Most notably, the latest version has been simplified overall externally, with a new selection of materials that add style to the tower in the absence of the more overt physical design expressions. Balconies were removed from the west elevation, and the pronounced box design that crowned the tower at the mechanical penthouse level was reimagined with a more modest form that is set back from the south elevation. 

The updated design sees the tower clad in flat white metal paneling, with panels of ribbed white metal worked in on the east and west elevations where the balconies were removed. Meanwhile, the podium features a number of precast panels, highlighted by a marble-like white concrete that plays off of bronze-coloured metal accents to evoke a luxurious feel for the main entrance. The new design also maintains the plan to redevelop the bordering laneway, Al Green Lane, as an illuminated public path for pedestrians and cyclists. 

Looking north at the podium and the redeveloped Al Green Lane (left), image from submission to City of Toronto

With ground broken, construction will be ramping up in the coming weeks as excavation gets underway in order to carve out three levels for underground parking. The 37-storey project has targeted occupancy for 2025, and is on the path towards making good on its promise of delivering rental units in a transit-oriented area. 

UrbanToronto will continue to follow progress on this development, but in the meantime, you can learn more about it from our Database file, 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:  Bousfields, Janet Rosenberg & Studio, Orin Demolition, A Division of Orin Enterprises Inc. , QuadReal Property Group, Sweeny &Co Architects Inc.