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Condo Watch: The Good Neighbour


Meet the new kid on a block full of playful art institutions


Queen & McCaul
Completion: Fall 2019
From: $900,000 for a signature suite (1205 sq ft)


Tridel has scored a spot south of Frank Gehry’s peacock-blue AGO addition and Will Alsop’s crayon-legged OCAD U. No pressure, right? The ArchitectsAlliance–designed 14-storey tower favours understated sophistication over eccentricity, choosing to complement its artsy neighbours rather than compete. Take the building’s upside down ziggurat-style massing, for example. Cantilevered volumes extend out as they rise, sheltering a ground-level plaza while preserving views of another local gem: the Neo-Gothic Anglican Church of St. George the Martyr.

The 189-unit development is not without its flourishes, though. Its white-on-white, glass-and-concrete facade is clad in metal fins, lending the structure a decidedly un-condo-like dignity. Interior design firm U31 continues this aesthetic inside, with a faceted mirror sculpture that grows from the lobby’s ceiling onto a wall.

Up top, a communal planted terrace will wrap three sides of the building, creating an intimate refuge overlooking Grange Park.



Kelly Cray
Co-principal, U31

“[The interior] design was influenced by many factors, including the proximity to such iconic buildings as OCAD and the AGO. The interiors reflect both the exterior’s architecture and a commitment to stay true to the artistic vibe of this downtown neighbourhood. We incorporated artistic elements and integrated them into a polished environment. [For instance], the lobby’s mirrored sculpture, which ‘grows’ out of the ceiling and continues down one side of the wall. It’s one of the first things residents will see and its faceted ‘form’ sets the tone for other areas in the condo. [Another example is] the party room feature lighting – it’s a series of layered frames which reflect onto the ceiling canopy.”


Peter Clewes
Principal, architectsAlliance

“The local ratepayer group is actively involved in any new project in the environs of the Grange, and the design of the project was shaped by extensive consultation. We were responding to the same site conditions as Alsop Architects faced when designing the Sharp Centre for Design at OCAD University: the need to create or preserve views westward from McCaul to St. George’s Anglican Church and into Grange Park, and to create an overall level of transparency on the ground level.

FORM does not conform to the standard configuration of balconies, window wall and other design features that characterize a typical residential design. The vertical fins that define the building skin diffuse the hard edges of the building’s geometry, further blurring the residential identity of the project and adding a slightly enigmatic quality to the form.”

Part of our series on five community-minded developments reimagining the condo tower as an intimate vertical village.

Originally published in Issue 3, 2016 as On the Up and Up: The Good Neighbour.


Get a closer look at what you can expect to find in the 2024 New Builds Issue of Designlines Magazine

In the 2024 Spring/Summer Issue of Designlines, we focus on New Builds and “celebrate the profound impact of creating something new, not just as an architectural endeavour but as a testament to laying down roots and shaping the very essence of our city’s identity,” editor-in-chief Joseph Cicerone writes.



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