As part of the newest addition to Toronto’s Canary District, developers will restore the landmark building that once housed the Canary Restaurant.
Toronto-based developers Dream Unlimited and Kilmer Group recently released details for Canary House, the latest phase of the 35-acre master-planned Canary District community located in the city’s West Don Lands.
In addition to bringing 206 new condos to the neighbourhood, the 13-storey mixed-use project’s developers intend to restore the three-storey structure that formerly housed the Canary Restaurant.
Housing Market News Alerts
Sign up for news alerts on the Toronto housing market
The century-old building located at the southeast corner of Cherry Street and Front Street East was first used as the location for Palace Street School in 1859 before a hotel took over the property years later. In the mid-1960s, the family-owned Canary Restaurant opened, becoming a neighbourhood go-to spot for breakfast and lunch. In 2007, the diner closed.
No specific details have been provided on what the restored building will be used for, except that it will “once again become a commercial destination anchoring Canary House.” Additional retail and commercial space will also be incorporated on the ground floor, creating 25,000 square feet worth of amenities for Canary House.
BDP Quadrangle, an award-winning architecture and design studio, says that it intends to honour the site’s history while integrating Indigenous culture and values. In collaboration with the Indigenous-owned architecture firm, Two Row Architect, Canary House will deliver an earth-based podium, curved building corners that represent clouds, and pebble walkways that mimic river stones from the Don Valley River, a recent press release explains.
“The cultural history of this location inspired our team to envision a community-oriented space that acknowledges and celebrates the land it sits on,” said Les Klein, Principal and Co-Founder of BDP Quadrangle, in the press release.
“We took great care to ensure each detail was authentic and respectful. As soon as you step foot onto the Canary House site, you will feel that you are in a special and inclusive place,” he added.
Canary House will be the fifth mixed-use development to be constructed in the Canary District. What started out as the 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Athletes’ Village, the Canary District is now home to the 18-acre Corktown Common park, the Cooper Koo YMCA, as well as restaurants and retail space.
“The Canary District and The Distillery have been the drivers for growth in the Downtown East, and we believe that this area, just a 15 minute walk from the downtown core, represents one of the best opportunities for living in a complete neighbourhood in Toronto,” said Ken Tanenbaum, Vice-Chair of Kilmer Group, in the release.
“The introduction of Canary House is a continuation of this vision, ensuring a diversity of housing and amenities that will serve this growing community for generations to come,” he added.