When you build the first condo in the immediate area of the Queen’s University campus in Kingston, it comes with certain expectations. Namely, will it make the neighbourhood proud?
PRK Developments and Brookfield Multiplex are behind University Suites, the new 195-unit structure coming to 495 Princess St. in a buzzing district of the city known as ‘The Hub.’ They’ve tasked Teeple Architects with the project’s design. Founded in 1989 by principal Stephen Teeple, the firm has won an astonishing amount of accolades in its history, garnering six Governor General Awards, Canada’s top architectural recognition.
The firm has a clear vision for University Suites.
“We wanted it to fit seamlessly into its surroundings, therefore a mid-rise building with step-backs to blend the massing and responds nicely to the street,” explained Stephen Teeple.
The two-toned building will have a dark masonry base to compliment the wealth of heritage buildings in downtown Kingston and floor to ceiling glass windows to provide a clean, modern design and plenty of light inside the suites.
“We wanted this project to be respectful to the great architecture of downtown Kingston. But at the same time, respond to the architecture as an urban moment, rather than a building in isolation. People will ‘sense it’, as well as see it,” said Teeple.
That thoughtfulness is carried through to the interior designs as well. Each individual condo is laid out for maximum functionality and there’s an emphasis on using every inch of space efficiently.
Outside the suites, the design focuses on who will call the new building home.
“We needed to include a full suite of amenities that create a social bond,” said Teeple. “Fitness facilities, study spaces on the ground floor and the roof, indoor and outdoor amenity spaces on the roof with views of the lake, these all become extensions of the residents’ personal spaces. We designed all of these with a certain vibe in mind as well, it had to look a little cool given who will live there.”
The condos start from just $188,900, making it ideal for Queen’s University students, faculty and staff from the university or nearby hospitals, or young professionals working in the area. With this residential base in mind, PRK Developments has fine tuned the design to fit the needs of the buyers. For example, and the amount of car parking has been reduced while the amount of bike parking has been increased.
All these details prove that University Suites will be not just an eye-catching addition to the neighbourhood, but a liveable condo, built to accommodate the lifestyle of its residents.
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