Modern design plays off a century-old church at Arch Lofts, a new four-storey infill condo development in Toronto’s vibrant Junction neighbourhood.

“I think it’s important that modern architecture reflects our time, yet we wanted to be respectful of the authentic historical building,” says Alex Speigel, a partner at Windmill Development Group, the firm behind the project.

Arch Lofts, set to launch in mid-April, includes 39 condo residences designed within two distinct condo buildings: the Vestry, an entirely new structure, and the Church, which artfully retains the exterior of the Heritage-designated Perth Avenue Methodist Church.

Loft-inspired suites are found in both buildings, and each has its own draws. For example, the Gothic styling of the Church offers heritage features, such as arched windows, seldom found in new condo units. And the Vestry boasts modern glass balconies, open floor plans and generous glazing.


Aesthetically, the two buildings play off of each other — in a respectful way, notes Speigel. “We kept the same brick colour as the Church Building. It’s the same colour palette but with a modern vocabulary,” he says of the Vestry.

Sustainable features are found throughout. “First and foremost is the fact that we’re saving an old building. In a way, the greenest building is the building that already exists,” says Speigel.

A geothermal system, which produces near-zero emissions, will heat and cool the buildings, and every suite has energy recovery ventilators, which draw fresh air from directly outside rather than a corridor achieving better air quality in the process.

The suites at Arch Lofts range from 550 square feet up to 1,800 square feet for the Vestry’s penthouse with a 1,100-square-foot terrace. Virtually every residence at Arch lofts has a unique floor plan, and pricing starts from the mid-$300,000s.


Speigel notes Windmill has kept it simple with the amenities at Arch Lofts, though there will be a multi-purpose room with exercise equipment and a kitchen. But he’s quick to point out all the Junction and nearby Bloordale strip have to offer. “There’s lots of amenities in the neighbourhood,” he says.

Bloordale Village’s arts scene, which sprouted in formerly industrial pockets of the area, even got mention in 2012 in the New York Times, which also noted “hip restaurants and shops are popping up.”

That much has continued. From Dolly’s, a Filipino mojito bar, to The Dupe Shop, a quirky music retailer specializing in cassettes, there’s not much you can’t find in the surrounding neighbourhoods. “That end of Bloor Street is changing almost daily,” Speigel observes. “The transformation we’ve seen in the past few years has been phenomenal.”

Of course, more-practical amenities, such as the Union Pearson Express Bloor Station, Lansdowne subway station and West Toronto Railpath are close by as well, as are numerous parks and schools.

Windmill expects the Vestry will be completed in mid-July and estimates work on the Church will wrap up in mid-September. “People don’t have to wait three years to move in,” says Speigel, noting another rarity in Toronto’s new-construction market.

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