The site is currently occupied by a two-storey commercial building at 101 Spadina Ave. that should be demolished in the coming weeks, and a surface Green P municipal public parking lot. The lot will be moved underground, include more spaces and be operated by the Toronto Parking Authority as part of the development.
Great Gulf was brought on as a partner after Devron acquired the 101 Spadina building in 2016 and began negotiating with City of Toronto representatives regarding a transaction involving the parking lot.
However, Devron president Pouyan Safapour told RENX Great Gulf's interest was bought out earlier this year – on an amicable basis – and his company will now develop it on its own.
Plans for 101 Spadina
The condo will include close to 300 units, underground resident parking for vehicles, bicycle storage and incorporate geothermal heating and cooling.
“While there will be a mix of small and large units, there will definitely be a focus on more livable and spacious sizes that people can live in long-term,” Safapour said.
Devron just issued the results of a survey of more than 800 Greater Toronto Area residents conducted by Angus Reid in late June. According to more than 60 per cent of respondents, condos must have ample storage and spacious living spaces as these are the main challenges Torontonians list when considering such an acquisition.
Safapour said there wasn’t anything specific from the survey’s findings that dictated the features incorporated into 101 Spadina. The results did, however, reinforce his belief people want better-built, architecturally interesting and aesthetically pleasing condos close to services and green spaces in Toronto.
End users being targeted
Devron is targeting end users with 101 Spadina and expecting a wide variety of residents, including single people, young couples, young couples with small children, couples with more mature children and older downsizers.
That will also be reflected in the building’s common amenities, which will include:
- party rooms;
- common working spaces;
- a gym;
- a children’s play room;
- a dining hall; and
- covered and outdoor rooftop space overlooking the city.
Safapour said Devron has avoided developing 60-plus-storey condos because “there's an inherent challenge in building and maintaining a building with 600 units that people really want to live in and feel comfortable living in.” He cited issues with less privacy, more noise and lower elevator ratios that can potentially come with larger projects.
Devron will also create a 10,000-square-foot park as a public amenity at the foot of 101 Spadina, which will provide easy access to the Spadina, King and Queen streetcars.
Devron has applied for a construction permit and will set up a sales office across the street in anticipation of sales launching in Q1 2024 and then construction beginning in the spring. It’s expected construction of 101 Spadina will take just over four years.
Proceeds from the land transfer from the city will support an estimated 20 to 30 new affordable off-site housing units in the area, with potential opportunities at current parking lots that could be converted to residential uses at 35 Bellevue Ave. and 15 Denison Ave.
Other Devron projects in Toronto
Toronto-based and family-owned Devron is developing three other Toronto projects, with the nine-storey, 67-unit The Winslow at 2781 Yonge St. being the nearest to completion.
“Every floor except the penthouse is occupied at this point, so people are living there and we're probably a few months away from registration and closing, as well as completion of the last details of construction,” Safapour said.
Zoning approvals have been received for a proposed 10-storey, 64-unit condo to be developed in partnership with Constantine Enterprises Inc. at 1140 Yonge St. It hasn’t yet been determined when sales will launch for the Audax-designed building.
“The slow (condo sales) market is one of the factors,” Safapour said. “It's not the only factor, but it's certainly one of the factors.”
Devron acquired a 0.95-acre site at the corner of John and South Station streets in the Weston Village neighbourhood for $16.5 million earlier this year.
It’s occupied by a few small single-storey commercial units and a parking lot.
Devron has applied to build a 40-storey, 484-unit condo on the property. It is consulting various stakeholders in the hope construction could potentially begin in late 2024 or early 2025.
Safapour said Devron is working on adding to its pipeline, but there’s nothing else he can talk about yet.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This article was edited after being published to include updated information about the suite count in the project, and to clarify that Devron initiated the buyout of Great Gulf's former interest in the development.