Posts tagged ‘Dundas St’

Dundas-King Pedestrian Mid-block Connection: A Downtown Public Space Concept

Last semester we were asked by our professor to create an independent project that would be one of the key pieces in our portfolios. As I am interested in Urban Design, urban renewal and I am active in the revival of downtown London, naturally I chose to do a concept project for the downtown.

I realized that the downtown lacks in quality urban spaces to entertain those who live in the core and those who are there to shop and visit.


I looked at the available spaces to create an interesting public space and narrowed it down to two, the parking lots between Dundas Street and King Street, and King Street and York Street [Site 1]. This would create an direct pedestrian mid-block connection between Dundas Street and the VIA train station on York Street; and the other site was the parking lots at Richmond Street and Carling Street [Site 2].


Listing the pro’s and con’s of each site I chose to do the midblock connection, however because of time constraints I could only do the portion between Dundas and King.

Realizing that this is an existing parking lot, that is usually full on weekdays, it would be important to re allocate the parking somehow. My solution to this is that there would be a public private partnership to build a mix use parkade between the midblock connection and Clarence and King and the existing buildings along clearance. My Concept poster shows the new building having retail at grade with a false second floor or it could be office space or apartments.

Existing Amenities

(Click for larger images)


Check out the 3D walkthrough of the space..

let me know what you think? Would you use this space? Is this something that would attract people to the downtown?




May 14, 2009 at 5:27 am 6 comments

Proposed Development at Dundas and English (In The Old East Village)

As we all know Medallion ( a Toronto based developer) had submitted an application for the southern part of the Dundas/Lyle/King/Hewitt block.  A developer from out of town had actually bought and assembled a few properties in one of the poorest neighborhoods in London; The Old East Village (or as some may called it EOA). They bought the properties probably because they were cheap and possibly because they saw potential in this neighborhood which was once a thriving shopping district. Now another OUT OF TOWN developer, also based in Toronto, Terrasan sees potential in the rebirth of this neighborhood. Originally they had purchased only the two properties directly to the west of English/Dundas Street corner from the city(these are brownfield sites). A couple months later they came back to the table and this time with a proposal almost 3 times as large encompassing several other properties (including the site of the Embassy).

Here’s what they are proposing to do as per the letter sent to the area residents :

726-748 Dundas Street – The purpose and effect of the proposed amendment is to permit the construction an 8-storey mixed use residential/commercial building withan increase in the permitted density of the siteto accommodate 150 residential units and a reduction in the minimum front yard depth. Possible amendment to the Zoning By-law Z.-1 FROM a Business District Commercial Special Provision (BDC(19)-D250-H46) Zone which permits a broad range commercial uses and residential uses TO a Business District Commercial Special Provision Bonus (BDC(_)-B-(_)) Zone to increase the permitted density of the siteand reduce the minimum front yard depth. In the alternative, Council may also consider an amendment to the Zoning By-law Z.-1 TO a Business District Commercial Special Provision (BDC(_)-D470-H46) Zone to increase the permitted density of the siteand reduce the minimum front yard depth.
File: Z-7544 Planner: Michael Tomazincic

I have attached 3 images; two elevations and 1 site plan. 

The building has 154 Condo units and has 9 floors in total – 3 storey podium, 5 storey tower Topped with a slanted roof with dormers.

–  ground floor retail

– 7 residential floors (2 podium 5 tower)

– 1 amenity(including greenroof)/mechanical floor

The materials include  Renaissance Stone on the podium portion, Brick on the tower portion and a Metal roof. The building also includes a tarace on the 4th floor (on top of the podium), a Green Roof on the top floor, Underground Parking, Hiden-in-building Garbage and bike storage, a wide pedestrian walkway between the west property line and the building bringing the pedestrian to the  interior courtyard which is the location of the residential entrance lobby. The ground floor retail will have individual entrances off of Dundas St as well as English St (includinga corner entrance), there will also be offices and service commercial on the rear portion of the ground floor accessed from an interal hallway.

Personally I believe that this development is great news for  the revitalization of the Old East Village neighborhood, the building design is not the best but it does incorporate several important Urban Design Principals such as Stepping back after the 3rd storey(creating a podium and continuing the existing street wall), Bringing the building to the lot line, Using a variety of materials and architectural features, Having individual entrances to ground floor retail right off the side walk, Has hidden parking (underground), Creating a mid-block connection to the municipal parking lot to the north of the property, Also the proposed building fits fairly well within the current urban fabric.

A couple things I would like to see changed is how the building addressesthe corner, judging from the southelevation it seems like the ground floor is on an angle, having a corner site they should use the  to their advantage, maybe mimic what was done on the building on the east side of the intersection. The other thing is that I found the podium to be extremely plane with little or no articulation it looks like a simple “box”.

What do you think about this development?

January 17, 2009 at 12:27 am 8 comments

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