With Etobicoke's Six Points Interchange—which epitomized the car-oriented culture that has 'driven' life in Toronto's West End for decades—and the surrounding area now becoming reconfigured and re-made into more urban and pedestrian-friendly environments, the age of strip malls and parking lots is finally giving way to a more sustainable era. Just west of Kipling TTC and GO station, Concert Properties' The Kip District is pioneering a newly urban, high-rise community which will bring the first influx of significant residential density (with other projects set to follow) to the area.
The revised layout of the site, image courtesy of Concert Properties
Previously the site of a parking lot and Canadian Tire, the five-tower master-planned community will bring new life to what was a dispiritingly indifferent suburban commercial landscape. A new rendering (below) shows that care has been taken to foster a pedestrian-oriented and vibrant street-scape, with shops and restaurants situated near Dundas Street, while a park/public plaza and shared amenities building are located in the heart of the site. According to Les Klein of Quadrangle Architects, the amenities building and public park serve to "foster community building" by bringing residents together in an inviting, functional space.
Compared to earlier schemes, the new layout minimizes car traffic, removing unnecessary roadway in favour of more pedestrian space. While Klein stresses that the design of the project "recognizes the car-oriented culture of the area," the design of the community seeks to sensitively balance automobile use with an increasingly vital public transit system. With automobile lanes textured in the same stone pattern as the walkways and public plaza (above), the space is demarcated as a predominantly pedestrian area, while still accommodating the car. Kipling Station, meanwhile, is a two minute walk, with subway trains heading east, GO trains headed to Union, and buses heading all across Etobicoke and to Toronto Pearson international Airport.
Currently, the first phase of the project—a 28-storey Page + Steele / IBI Group Architects-designed tower called the 'One'—has entered sales and marketing, while new renderings give us a look at concepts for two of The Kip District's later phases, which include the Quadrangle Architects-designed buildings pictured below.
Throughout the project, a strong emphasis has been placed on sustainable design, with targeted LEED Gold Certification and Toronto's Tier 2 Green Standards. For the 'One,' energy-efficient features will include double glazed low-e thermal windows, as well as a motion-controlled lighting system in common areas, and a green roof supplied by a storm water drainage system.
In addition, each suite will feature individually programmable thermostats, while the building will be equipped with an integrated heat recovery ventilation system (HRV). Finally, a tri-sorting waste management chute system will conveniently separate garbage, recycling, and organics, while designated electric vehicle charging stations are designed to facilitate hybrid and electric cars.
Source: Urban Toronto, 8/5/2015