It’s a development site that’s four times the size of the Honest Ed’s property, sits at the confluence of eight TTC and GO/Metrolinx commuter rail routes, and holds out the promise of improving the public realm at an intersection that has long held little truck for the needs of pedestrians.
For all those reasons, and many more, hundreds of west-end residents last week crowded into a former Zeller’s store on Dundas West, just south of Bloor, to get a glimpse at the most preliminary ideas being floated by Choice Properties REIT, the land-development arm of Loblaw and owner of the four-hectare site.
But Choice and City of Toronto officials weren’t (yet) offering up much in the way of specifics, such as the number of new units, building heights or massing. They did allow that the project will include various forms of residential housing (high-rise towers, mid-rise, affordable rental), retail/commercial/office space, new internal streets, public spaces and perhaps even a plan to relocate the bunker-like Bishop Marrocco/Thomas Merton Catholic Secondary School, situated at the southeastern corner of Dundas West and Bloor, to a quieter location farther south on the trapezoid-shaped property. (If the school is included, the entire property is 5.7 hectares.)
“What we’re building is an urban neighbourhoood,” said Gord Perks, city councilor for Parkdale-High Park.
“These larger sites have an opportunity for city building that you may not get with a single-tower site,” added planning consultant Benjamin Hoff, a partner with Urban Strategies Inc. (USI), which is advising Choice and also working on the Honest Ed’s project as well as an ambitious intensification plan at Eglinton and Victoria Park. Proposed megaproject at Bloor-Dundas aims to build ‘urban neighbourhood’ – The Globe and Mail