River City 3, West Don Lands
Builder/developer Urban Capital
Size 421 to 2,083 square feet
Price $229,900 to $1,395,000
Sales centre 51 Trolley Cres., at King and Lower River streets. Monday to Thursday from noon to 6 p.m.; weekends from noon to 5 p.m.
Contact 416-862-0505 or extremearchitecture.ca
To get buyers excited about the third instalment of River City in West Don Lands, Urban Capital gave them the building blocks to create their dream home.
That is, Lego blocks to replicate the modern, black-and-white high-rise with about 330 loft-style suites within the LEED Gold infill development next to the future Pan Am Games village.
"It doesn't look like a typical condo in the city, and with phase three we just stepped it up a big level," says partner David Wex, whose six-year-old helped assemble the toy
packages for the May launch event.
"We brought in architects who don't have a history of residential [projects], but are institutional architects; therefore, River City will have a real brand about it forever, which is important. You're going to live in a bit of an icon."
The toy models came with easy-to-assemble instructions, but the 29-storey tower will be a complex structure that Montreal designer Saucier + Perrotte devised south of the first two phases along Lower River Street, between King Street and Eastern Avenue.
"Three sides of the building are relatively tame, but one side is really out there," Mr. Wex observes. "You could have a small unit with a huge terrace or a big unit with just a balcony or a unit with another unit that juts out on top of it or below it. Every unit is different."
A 614-square-foot, one-bedroom-plus-den model suite is representative of most plans up to 962 square feet, ranging from studios to two-bedroom-plus-den units.
Also in the works are larger suites, townhouses and penthouses. For instance, the protrusion and retraction of some west-facing units proved challenging to equip with service cavities, such as plumbing and wiring, so Graham Hill, acclaimed designer and Ted Talks speaker, created 20 customizable suites.
"He has some interesting ideas about space, so I asked him to take on a select number of units that were more difficult to properly lay out and come up with something creative," says Mr. Wex, who connected with Mr. Hill during the development of micro condos at Smart House.
A sample plan features a cube within a cube – or a central pod – left open at one end for natural light or enclosed with curtains for privacy. The other side of the cube will integrate kitchen storage and multifunctional components.
"A lot of the elements are made with millwork so they can be moved around, so the central pod is transferable and shiftable," Mr. Wex says.
Common areas will also combine fashion and function with a 2,000-square-foot gym, two-storey common room with a screening area, sloped lawn and outdoor pool, plus rooms for meetings, child's play, reading, crafts and hobbies.
"There are a lot of amenities that go above and beyond your typical party room and gym, which is a big innovation at River City 3," he says. "[For instance,] we have a product library, if you need things like a ladder, drill, level or steam cleaner, or something else you wouldn't normally have in a condo for yourself."
Retail will also lie at the base of this building, bound by public spaces such as Lawren Harris Square and Corktown Common Park.
"What's unique about River City is that there aren't many [projects] with so much new, high-end, high-design park land in-between, like Underpass Park to the north," adds Mr. Wex, referring to the urban playground with art, chess tables, bocce and basketball courts beneath the Richmond-Adelaide overpasses.
Parking will cost $39,000 and monthly fees 49 cents a square feet. Occupancy begins in November, 2017.