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Will One Yonge Street Be Home to Canada’s Tallest Tower?

Will One Yonge Street Be Home to Canada’s Tallest Tower?

The site housing the Toronto Star’s current headquarters could soon be home to Canada’s tallest residential building.

The site currently housing the headquarters of the Toronto Star newspaper could soon be home to Canada’s tallest residential building should a new mixed-use proposal go ahead.

According to media reports, a proposal unveiled by Vancouver-based developer Pinnacle International last month would see six towers ranging from 75 to 88 storeys in height built on what is currently a parking lot on the current site.

Upon completion, the 88-storey tower would be the largest residential building in Canada. If the entire project goes ahead, the combined 6.4 million square feet of space would constitute the largest residential mixed-use project in the country according to real-estate research firm RealNet Canada Inc.

According to a list compiled by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, Canada’s largest residential building at present is Absolute World Building D, a spiralling 56-storey concrete structure reaching 175.6 metres (576 feet). That building was completed last year by developers Fernbrook Homes and Cityyzen Development Group and built by Dominus Construction Group.

Absolute World Building D

Absolute World Building D. Image Source: The Skyscraper Centre

In 2010, however, work began on the Aura at College Park in Toronto which will rise to 271.9 metres/892 feet upon completion in 2014.

According to a report in the National Post, a particularly interesting feature of the One Yonge Street plan revolves around the introduction of a European-style street referred to as a woonerf – a street on which both cars and pedestrians are allowed but where vehicles are not able to travel at greater than walking speed and pedestrians are given priority.

In a phone interview with Bloomberg, Pinnacle vice president of sales and marketing Anson Kwok said the location for the new development was ideal.

“It’s a vibrant neighbourhood and we want to continue growing our waterfront presence,” Kwok told the media organisation. “Being at the foot of the longest street in North America is quite attractive. Location is a big one — we’re opening up the gateway to the waterfront.”

The proposal was submitted to the City of Toronto last month and its impact upon traffic, parking and infrastructure is being examined by city staff – a process which has typically been known to take around 12 months.

Though welcomed by the building industry, the proposal underscores fears about an oversupply of multi-residential buildings in Toronto resulting from the boom in condominium development in recent years.

By Andrew Heaton
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