Image: V+A Architects and Finegold Architects via City of Toronto

Location: 415 Broadview Avenue, Toronto
Developer: LCH Developments / Lifestyle Custom Homes
Architect: Finegold Alexander Associates and Van Elslander + Associates Architects

Across Toronto, you’ll find a handful of church-to-condo conversions.

You might be familiar with Medallion Capital Group’s project in High Park, which is in the process of transforming the High Park Alhambra Church into a series of new condos and townhomes. Or, you might have come across the development applications proposed in Weston or Cabbagetown to turn churches into mixed-use housing projects.

Now, another church building in Toronto’s North Riverdale neighbourhood could be joining the list.

In December 2021, a development application was filed to the City of Toronto to repurpose and integrate an existing church into a 10-storey residential building proposed for 415 Broadview Avenue. The developer, LCH Developments / Lifestyle Custom Homes, has also worked on other church-condo projects including St. Leslieville Church Lofts and Connolly Condos in Hamilton.

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The development site is located on the northeast corner of Broadview asd Simpson avenues, and is approximately 2,005 square metres in area. The St. John’s Presbyterian Church currently exists on the lot, and is used for regular congregation services, community outreach initiatives and Sunday school. Constructed in 1908, the Neo-Gothic-style church is listed on the City’s Heritage Register.

If approved, the application would intensify the site, retaining several aspects of the church including its west and south facades, portions of the north and east facades, and the church’s full square tower and turret. The main elevation on the west side would be conserved, which contains the church’s arched entrance, arched stained glass windows, square tower, turret and buttresses. The church’s roof and chimney would be removed to accommodate a new eight-storey addition.

Toronto-based V+A Architects and Boston-based Finegold Alexander Architects are collaborating on the project. A “distinctive undulating massing pattern,” would be created to provide visual interest throughout the building’s new addition.

Image: V+A Architects and Finegold Architects via City of Toronto

Of the 60 units proposed for the project, the breakdown would include seven studios, 40 one-bedroom,
eight two-bedroom and five three-bedrooms units. According to the application’s planning rationale, six of the units would be designated as affordable suites. Along Simpson Avenue, the project would also introduce two two-storey townhouses in the base of the heritage building.

Approximately 683 square metres of non-residential space would be reserved for exclusive use of the church, including a new ground-floor sanctuary that would be accessed through the original church entrance.

A combined total of 184.5 square metres would be set aside for indoor and outdoor amenity facilities on the second floor of the project. Access to the residential lobby would be provided near Simpson Avenue, where a 282 square-metre, landscaped privately-owned publicly accessible space (POPS) would be constructed at the southwest corner of the site. The POPS would feature raised planters, seating areas, new trees, bicycle parking rings and decorative paving to “enhance the streetscape.”

Image: V+A Architects and Finegold Architects via City of Toronto

An existing driveway located off of Simpson Avenue would lead to an internalized loading space and a car elevator that connects to an underground parking garage with 31 spaces. In the project, 60 bicycle parking spaces would also be included for long- and short-term use.

In the neighbourhood, sales are ongoing at Nahid Broadview while registration is open for The Lofthouse Condominiums.

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