Meet Your New Neighbour: West Queen West Condos

I’ll be the first to say that the buildings that occupy 944 Queen Street, the site of the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art are ugly. But that doesn’t mean that it deserves this fate:

West Queen West Condos.jpg.opt800x532o0,0s800x532

That image above is a rendering for West Queen West Condos, the proposed development that will soon be razing MOCCA, two other galleries and an animation school.

While I’m not completely against condos going in this space, I hate that the proposed new building is so boring and predictable. Glass, glass, more glass… On King West, maybe but at Queen and Shaw it sticks out and not in a good way. The tiny balconies look sad and pathetic and the grey parts just completes the whole new-and-awkward look.

The one thing I do like about this building is how the street-level looks. It’s sleek, it’s simple and, assuming that it’s red brick, it fits in nicely with the neighbourhood. It’s also a style that I think is completely achievable. I don’t even mind what I assume is a driveway to the parking garage. While I’m sure it’ll be a pain-in-the-ass to get out of, it looks nice.

West Queen West Condos isn’t yet 100 per cent for sure but it’s getting there. After the City Planning department rejected the original 31 meters (including the mechanical penthouse), Urbancorp, the developer, revised their proposal and dropped the height of the building to wait for it, 27.5 meters. That’s still too tall for this area.

Height isn’t the only thing that will be changing. The developers also agreed to increased setbacks, more three-bedroom units, fewer parking spots and fewer units overall. Now these are some good changes and I get why the City took what it could and decided not to fight over the height of this building. If it had, the whole thing would have gone to the OMB where there would have been the chance that we could have ended up with the original, bigger, amendment-free proposal.

The whole system is just so mind-boggling stupid… Can whoever our new mayor is please fix it?


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