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LeftBank by Broccolini

Welcome to LeftBank – one of Toronto’s most buzzworthy developments in the emerging River District

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Welcome to LeftBank – one of Toronto’s most buzzworthy developments in the emerging River District

If location is (still) everything, then Toronto’s Downtown East is a pocket unlike anywhere else in the city. Surrounded by stunning greenspaces and an award-winning trail system, the River District offers new one-of-a-kind cafes and restaurants and a transit connection that makes the downtown and other key destinations across the GTA easily accessible.

This prime blend of neighbourhood characteristics is the inspiration behind LeftBank, the newest development by Broccolini, the company’s second project in Downtown East. The River District – named for the stunning topography and naturalized spaces in the area – is undergoing an incredible revitalization, marking a thrilling new chapter and identity for the neighbourhood.

“When you step into the Downtown East, there’s a really tangible energy that we were captivated by immediately,” says Anthony Broccolini, COO, Broccolini. “It was this incredible spirit and transformation that we aimed to capture through LeftBank – from the building’s presence in the east end skyline, to our investment into smart technologies and amenities that make sense for life today. This is the place and time to be in this part of Toronto.”

LeftBank is located off of River Street, directly above the Don River, and will stand at 34-storeys once complete. The third project in a collaborative trilogy with the renowned architects at IBI Group, LeftBank doesn’t shy away from using bold form, colour palettes or materials, resulting in a strong, sleek and confident design that needs no introduction. The black and white exterior features an iconic sail-like mast with a tapered architectural element that intersects with the building, sure to be a staple in Toronto’s east end skyline for decades to come.

There’s an abundant green ribbon already wrapping the River District, and LeftBank is incorporated into and enhances this existing system, recognizing the importance of greenspaces for the human spirit. A new linear park on the south side of LeftBank extends the area’s park series and connects to the Don River and the nearby ravine network of walking trails, where you can head up to Evergreen Brick Works, beloved for its sustainability programming and farmers’ market.

Retail spaces will be included at grade for new boutique shops or cafes, and widened sidewalks with newly planted trees will make for an enjoyable pedestrian experience. As the area continues to transform, the upcoming East Harbour transit hub will increase the connectivity in the already easily accessible neighbourhood and will create upwards of 70,000 jobs alongside new entertainment, dining and cultural options.

While LeftBank’s location is unmatched anywhere else in the city, the interiors by Patton Design rise to the challenge of embodying the essence of the River District. Drawing inspiration from mid-century, quirky design out of Milan and the industrial, raw qualities from the neighbourhood’s history, interiors feature sleek metals in contrast with softer muted pink and orange pastels. Walking into the lobby, residents will be immediately taken by the monolithic feel, high ceilings, bronze and charcoal clad columns, warm lighting and oversized porcelain tiles. The reception desk uses stone with lavender veining for an unexpected pop of colour. Across from the desk, three built-in banquettes offer individual seating with a pod-like effect.

“We wanted to do something different in our design for LeftBank and lean into some of the raw qualities of the neighbourhood along with the tech-savvy nature of the building,” says Sean Swayze of Patton Design. “It’s bold and it’s sleek and it’s also unexpected. These qualities combine for a really spectacular final look and feel as soon as you walk into the lobby and arrive home.”

There’s something for everyone at LeftBank, with suites offered in studio, one-bedroom, one-bedroom plus den, two- and three-bedroom layouts, making this an ideal home for families, young couples, singles and downsizers alike. The suites extend the lobby’s language of design, featuring colour-blocking in the kitchen with wood tones, and a geometric ceramic backsplash continuing the retro-Italian inspired vibe. Urban bathrooms continue the use of wood tones and include oversized porcelain tiles with a custom vanity wall for sleek impact.

LeftBank marks Broccolini’s investment into the Downtown East and into smart technologies. Using the Home by Broccolini system via a suite wall pad or smart phone app, residents can access a series of features designed to simplify everyday living. Select features include granting guests’ entry, enabling alarms, accessing private amenity spaces and receiving parcel notifications. Home by Broccolini also offers a digital door lock, a leak detector, and upgrade features such as lighting and blind control. The entire building (suites, common and amenity areas) will be outfitted with high-speed internet.

The world has been a tumultuous place lately, and there’s no place like home – so LeftBank’s amenity program is extremely forward-thinking, giving residents everything they need. Seeking time and space for reprieve? The terrace with waterfront views is an option, or there’s the yoga studio with juice bar, meditation room and Zen garden to help silence the mind. Online shopping getting you through a rough week? The parcel locker room means your package will arrive safely and securely and will be stored carefully, keeping your items in pristine condition.

Starting or maintaining a health journey? Step into the fully-equipped fitness studio and exceed your personal goals. Working at home and finding it tough? There’s a co-working lounge so you can maintain boundaries in the workplace, and a kids’ zone where your children can play and make new friends. Finally tackling the to-do list? Head on down to the tool annex, where you can make all your DIY dreams come true… or just fine-tune your bicycle. Hosting or just looking for some leisure time? Enjoy the private theatre, gaming lounge or speakeasy. Let’s not forget the dog spa, where all of the doggies are welcome to enjoy some pooch pampering.

At a glance, LeftBank has it all. Location, architecture and design, smart tech convenience and expertly planned amenities create a multifaceted property that has something for everyone. Beyond these superb features, the family-owned developer’s legacy and track-record of success speak for themselves.

“We put our name on everything we build, and that means a lot to us. When you buy in a Broccolini building, you can rest assured in the quality of the product from start to finish,” says Anthony Broccolini.

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Broccolini breaks ground at River & Fifth

Broccolini breaks ground at River & Fifth Condos in Toronto’s Corktown neighbourhood

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Broccolini breaks ground at River & Fifth Condos in Toronto’s Corktown neighbourhood

Montreal-based developer Broccolini has broken ground at River & Fifth Condos, a new condo development at Dundas St. E. & River St. in Toronto’s Corktown neighbourhood. Comprising 37-storeys and 560 units in one-, two- and three-bedroom layouts, the project is due for completion in 2023.

Broccolini is a family-owned business in operation for more than 70 years now. “While our name is relatively new in Toronto, in Montreal we have been an active partner in the city’s growth for many decades, with some of the most exciting projects, including the tallest mixed-use tower in the city and new national bank head-office, currently under development,” says Chief Operating Officer Anthony Broccolini.

“Using our family name on our projects means a lot to us and reflects our commitment to excellence in everything we build,” he adds. “We’re unique in that commitment as we wear the two hats of this industry – both the construction side and developer side. It is this track record that we bring to Toronto. River & Fifth is a really special project because it marks our first residential tower property in Toronto, and we feel really grateful it can be in a neighbourhood with so much promise and connected to greenspace and public parks.”

River & Fifth is located in downtown east, an area already undergoing significant development of greenspace, parks and other public spaces, given its proximity to the Don River.

“It’s a great opportunity to do city-building in a way that we can be proud of and create value for the city and for residents,” says Broccolini.

River & Fifth is designed by Graziani + Corazza Architects Inc., with design from U31 Design and sales by the Milborne Group.

broccolini.com

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Broccolini preparing for market return with hiring push, plans for Toronto

COVID-19 already influencing new home and condo design – experts

 


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M2M Spaces, Aoyuan Canada

COVID-19 already influencing new home and condo design – experts

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COVID-19 already influencing new home and condo design – experts

COVID-19 is challenging all kinds of things about life in Canada – including the way we live and work. Our panel of experts share their insights on the new home and condo design changes already taking place.

M2M Spaces, Aoyuan Canada
Photo: M2M Spaces, Aoyuan Canada

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Broccolini

COVID-19 has transformed our homes into our offices, classrooms, gyms, and playgrounds. Our homes need to encourage physical and mental health. To support the growing roles of our homes, flexibility in design will be key. For remote workers, we’ll need to prioritize flex spaces which offer natural light, plus acoustical and visual privacy to maintain separation between work and homelife.

Building amenities such as the coworking space offered in Broccolini’s River & Fifth and upcoming LeftBank projects can make this possible for residents with less space. For material selection, we’ll continue to prioritize durability and cleaning ease, incorporating choices such as quartz countertops and porcelain tiles in residences and amenity spaces.

Megan Collins
Design Manager, Broccolini
Toronto
broccolini.com

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Dunpar Homes

There’s no question that moving forward people will continue to work from home if they’re able to, and that decision will greatly affect how people choose to design their new homes or condominiums in this new normal. Our space will have to be very functional, livable and afford us the room we need to work. There will be great emphasis on building out multi-purpose rooms that have the ability to work smarter for us and take full advantage of square footage.

There’s great power in good design. A living room equipped with bookshelves and a console table could function as an office, whereas a guest bedroom could also have built-in desk and storage solutions to offer the same value. It’s less about dedicating a specific room as an office and instead making certain rooms offer dual functions.

Lisa Rogers
Executive Vice-President
Design
Dunpar Homes
Etobicoke, Ont.
dunparhomes.com

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Flato Developments

Flexible spaces are a great way to reconcile livability with affordability. In response to the working- from-home reality, we have started exploring the idea of co-ownership condo suites with a shared flexible zone that would allow two potential owners to share a home office space.

In multi-unit condo design where space is typically very efficient, we are looking beyond the four walls of each suite in order to find flexible and cost-effective design solutions through cost sharing. We think shared indoor and outdoor amenity areas with generous, strategically located flexible spaces designed with functionality, wellness and technology features would be very marketable. This way, a potential buyer might opt to pay more to buy into a building where there are options to work from home, but not always within the confines of the walls in his condo suite.

Eduardo Ortiz, for Flato Developments
Principal, Architecture Unfolded
Toronto
architectureunfolded.ca

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Gairloch Developments

We have been seeing the trend in work-from-home increase over the past decade. Urban professionals long to eliminate a commute to gain more time for family and personal pursuits. There is also a desire to work in a more informal environment with comfort of home conveniences. Our clients are looking for uncluttered living spaces, timeless design and large windows affording views and plenty of natural light.

We understand that a condominium amenity space is an integral part of a building. A well-designed amenity should remain flexible, be attractive to many and facilitate future ways that we will work and inhabit our homes. At our 1414 Bayview project, the flexible amenity space is realized within a series of grand rooms, including a large communal table, for formal and informal lounging and working.

Our firm believes that a well-designed living space continues outdoors. Private, open-air retreats remain a top priority for our clients, especially in these unprecedented times. Several of the upper units at 1414 Bayview have access to large private terraces which will allow for outdoor lounging, entertaining and even working, from the comforts of home.

Stephanie Vermeulen & Kelly Doyle
for Gairloch Developments
Sixteen Degree Studio
Toronto
gairloch.ca

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Georgian Communities

An open concept floorplan has generally been the defining characteristic of new home design for years. The possibility of the new norm remaining suggests that flexible private areas such as home offices, gyms and playrooms with acoustic insulation are no longer a luxury but a necessity. In lowrise homes, functional finished lower levels offer additional space at an affordable price while eliminating impact to main floor principal rooms. Extensions to the outdoors from traditional living spaces will become more valued. Enlarged windows, covered porch and patio areas, walkouts when possible all help provide a sanctuary without leaving the home.

Danielle Jaques
Interior Design Coordinator
Georgian Communities
Barrie, Ont.
georgianinternational.com

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Heathwood Homes

In the new reality of a COVID-19 world, more people will be working from their home. This isn’t necessarily new, it’s just going to become so much more prevalent now.

In most homes, the trend towards the more open concept designs over the last decade does allow for flex space on the ground floor, but that same design comes with distractions in the form of noise and other people.

The easiest solution would be to carve out some “office space” in an existing bedroom or the basement area where daytime distractions would be minimized.

Bedrooms can be modified to have a desk niche, in lieu of a closet or have a murphy bed setup that allows for lots of additional daytime space. Also, in some homes, the laundry room could be moved to the basement, and that space becomes ideal office space.

Of utmost importance is that you have your Internet connections and modems of the highest speed and quality – so that you can ensure connectivity everywhere in the house. That way you can move around the home as needed – so that morning meeting can be had with a coffee on the front porch. Good technology is key.

Bob Finnigan
Chief Operating Officer
Acquisition & Housing
Heathwood Homes
Toronto
heathwood.com

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Minto Communities

Within condos, technology must be elevated to offer keyless entry, parcel drop-off and virtual platforms which can keep residents connected. Amenities should include breakout rooms and pods that facilitate continued amenity independent use, with greater emphasis on easily disinfected surfaces. There will be value to designs that can prioritize private outdoor spaces, and offer provisions for full-time work/study for multiple people, separating work and personal life within a single space.

We must use the events of COVID-19 to think about the resilience of systems and spaces, without losing track of the importance of designing spaces that promote well-being through community and connection.

Matt Brown
Director, Product Development
Minto Communities
Toronto
minto.com

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National Homes

Remote work spaces can take many forms. In larger homes, a dedicated office can work for one or two members of a household. For smaller homes, an alcove off a hallway with pocket doors for audible separation, similar to an office cubicle, may be all that is needed.

Glass partitions can be incorporated to allow a parent to keep an eye on their little ones, while still having a noise separation. If distractions in the home are not an issue, the main living space can be used as a flex space. Built-in desks with accessible outlets, such as National’s signature “Family Centre,” can be the perfect space to work from.

Wayne Cassidy
for National Homes
Principal
Cassidy and Co. Architectural Technologists
Ajax, Ont.
cassidyco.com

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Broccolini River & Fifth

Broccolini preparing for market return with hiring push, plans for Toronto

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Broccolini preparing for market return with hiring push, plans for Toronto

Canadian industrial, commercial and residential real estate developer Broccolini is ramping up hiring activity in anticipation of when market activity returns.

It also has plans for expansion in the Toronto residential market.

Broccolini River & Fifth
River & Fifth, at 5 Defries St., along the banks of Toronto’s Don River

The Montreal-based company, also with projects in Toronto and Ottawa, is looking to fill several positions in the coming weeks, ranging from planning to construction to property management.

“We are proud to have been able to keep our entire team employed throughout the pandemic, with the exception of the day labourers directly affected by the closure of the construction sites,” says Anthony Broccolini, chief operating officer at Broccolini. “Our exceptional positioning in the real estate market is now affording us the opportunity to further expand our team following these difficult times.”

Positions are available in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.

Strong growth projected

Once construction activities resume, Broccolini says its expectations for growth are excellent, thanks to a full backlog of contracted projects; a reflection of the quality, scale and prestige of the various industrial, commercial and residential projects the company has delivered over the last few years.

To carry out the projects already underway, and those that will be launching in the coming months, Broccolini is looking to hire a senior project manager, manager of real estate development, site superintendent and more.”

While we expect sales velocity to take some time to return to pre-COVID levels, the fundamental imbalance remains between supply and demand in the residential market in Toronto,” Phil Brennen, associate vice-president, real estate development, told Condo Life.

“The bottleneck that existed before the pandemic, which is essentially a function of approvals processes that have seen cycle times of three years or more, has been closed off completely as already overworked staff at the City have unable to accept new submissions. Add to that the fact that a number of projects that were slated for launch this spring and summer have been pushed back indefinitely, and you potentially have a major issue with supply. So, though demand for new units may initially be slower when activity resumes, the units available for buyers will be significantly diminished. As a result, the expectation is that while velocity will take some time to come back to normal levels, pricing will not soften.

Bullish on Toronto

“At the end of the day – particularly in times of uncertainty – residential real estate in a rapidly growing global city remains a safe and desirable investment,” Brennen says.

Broccolini has two large residential highrise projects underway in Toronto, in downtown east. River & Fifth, at 580 units and 38 storeys, was under construction until the industry-wide pause in activity.

“Once the provincial government gives the okay, excavation and shoring work will continue,” Brennen says.

The second project, at 385 units and 34 storeys, is close to the finish line for approvals, he says. The intent was to launch sales in the summer, though this will be reviewed depending on the timing of the return to the “new normal.”

Broccolini has several sites in the works, and is actively pursuing new acquisitions during the current slowdown, says Brennen.

“We believe strongly in Toronto’s high-density residential market and will continue to invest a significant portion or our resources in new deals in the months and years ahead.”

Broccolini is a single-source provider of planning, construction and property management services for industrial, commercial, institutional and residential buildings. Its real estate management subsidiary manages a portfolio of more than 50 properties, representing a total of more than 6.5 million sq. ft. of assets.

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