Humbold Properties Proposes 56-Storey Tower on Adelaide

Humbold Properties, a developer and manager of office, retail, and industrial properties across the GTA, is proposing to develop a surface parking lot that they own at 217 Adelaide Street West in Downtown Toronto. The property, which goes through the lot south to Pearl Street, is immediately east of a proposal by Westbank Corp and Allied Properties REIT for a 57-storey office and residential tower on the site of 19 Duncan Street and adjacent Adelaide Street lots. To the east is an 8-storey above-ground parking garage.

2217 Adelaide West, Toronto, by Humbold Properties, Kirkor Architects & Planners

Shown in the rendering above is the proposed tower, looking south, in relation to the two approved Mirvish+Gehry towers. Not shown in the rendering above is the 19 Duncan proposal which would replace the parking lot, small garage, and heritage warehouse shown to the right of the 217 Adelaide tower.

For 217 Adelaide West, architects David Butterworth and Adrienne Lee at Kirkor Architects and Planners wanted something atypical, something museum-like, something that could hold its own against the concrete parking garage to the east, and something that would hide an above-ground parking garage behind a sculptural facade.

As can be seen above but especially below, the design for 217 Adelaide falls within a style known as Brutalism where raw concrete is used as a primary cladding material. There are a number of Brutalist buildings in Toronto, amongst the best known of which are Robarts Library at the University of Toronto and the original John Andrews-designed buildings at UTSC. A recent example of Brutalism in Toronto can be found at River City, where patterned concrete walls face the Eastern Avenue overpass. While the style is one that can be considered an acquired taste, when the concrete is poured with care to minimize blemishes, and when the typically minimal details are engaging, Brutalist buildings can be surprisingly warm and inviting.

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Source: Urban Toronto, 05/07/2015

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Sharon Chung

Sharon Chung

CENTURY 21 Atria Realty Inc., Brokerage*
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