55Mercer_Construction2 Photos: James Bombales

Only a year after it launched, construction on the 543-unit 55 Mercer Condos by CentreCourt is already well underway.

Located in the heart of Toronto’s Entertainment District, 55 Mercer is situated on the site of the former Wayne Gretzky’s restaurant and The Second City comedy theatre. The existing three-storey brick commercial building is being replaced by a 47-storey, IBI Group-designed tower, anchored at ground level by a six- and four-storey podium.

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The six-storey section faces Mercer Street and Blue Jays Way, and features a warehouse-style façade clad in red brick that pays homage to the history of the neighbourhood and is seen on nearby buildings such as the Canadian Westinghouse Company Building across the street.

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The northeastern section of the podium is four storeys high and is clad in grey brick and vision glass. When complete, the podium will have expansive retail spaces and include a public art component. The podium will also house the development’s 11,500 square feet of indoor and outdoor amenities.

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The tower itself is set back from the main street and features bold vertical and horizontal lines, clad in a copper-coloured material with a contrasting white metal that surrounds the grid-like window pattern on its northwest corner.

Wayne Gretzy’s restaurant closed its doors for good in October 2020, making way for construction which started a month later. Demolition of the existing building took place from November 2020 to March 2021. Once the site was cleared of debris, excavation and shoring equipment arrived to begin the next phase of construction.

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Today, the site is partially excavated with a single excavator visible and a mound of clay in the middle providing access to the pit. Scaffolding has also been assembled on the west side of the site, above the sidewalk on Blue Jays Way. Excavation and shoring is scheduled to continue through the spring before below-grade formwork commences in the summer. A tower crane should also be installed by the summer.

Pricing at 55 Mercer Condos starts from $621,990. To learn more, visit the project listing on BuzzBuzzHome.

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