A cutting edge condo project is being proposed for a nondescript part of northern Toronto, in what may be a ‘shock and awe’ development for local residence. Designed by UK architect Will Alsop with the interiors by Toronto-based Quadrangle Architects, its architecture is unlike anything currently existing in the city. News of ‘Alaska’ has already stirred up conversations online with comments ranging from “a great leap forward” to “looks like someone slapped an egg carton on a block of cheese.”
The glacier inspired building is separated into two distinct components: the 7-storey podium that will be wrapped in a fabric-like woven steel screen, and the 3-storey cantilevered glass-clad structure that is reminiscent of Alsop’s famous Sharp Centre for Design OCAD building downtown.
“The client was looking for something a little different,” remarks Alsop. “She also wanted to do a different type of interior. You can slide inner walls so that bedrooms become balconies. You can open your whole apartment to the outside. We’re trying to keep the units as open and flexible as possible.”
The client, former architect Bianca Pollak, added “I believe this part of Yonge needs something. I see this as an opportunity to do something. When Will is involved, the results are always extraordinary. We’re all very excited.”
Another bold move by Pollak is to build one full floor of underground public parking, a move perhaps to dampen the expected opposition to the project by local residence.
The development, which is to be located on Yonge St. & Strathgowan Ave. (between Eglington & Lawrence avenues) is expected to be submitted to the City’s planning department in the coming weeks with community consultations to follow.
Forward-thinking designs always attract strong opinions… what do you think about ‘Alaska’?
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