WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DECADE MAKES – A BRAND NEW REGENT PARK IS TAKING SHAPE

<Regent Park as it was about a decade ago>

The new Regent Park shows what can be done when the city, province and a developer work together – mixing market value and public housing, creating parkland, playgrounds, soccer fields, a running track, an ice rink, a state-of-the-art aquatic centre, theatres, a fashion design school, restaurants, community gardens, a supermarket, coffee shops, a bank, senior’s housing, a new community centre – the works.

Two-thirds of this massive project is finished, but there’s much more to come.  To watch the Regent Park neighbourhood evolve take the #506 streetcar to Sackville Street and Gerrard East – and walk south.

ALEXANDER AT YONGE STREET – IS THIS ENOUGH DEVELOPMENT OR MORE THAN ENOUGH?

Folks who live in the downtown district between Carlton and Alexander Streets must be wondering how much more development their neighbourhood can take.

Small shops and businesses are disappearing overnight; the former Westbury (now a Marriott) is about to come down; elderly high-rises are being replaced by new ones; the famous St. Charles clocktower & what’s beneath it may soon bite the dust; and so on.

<404-484 Yonge Street – 38-storey tower proposed>

<475 Yonge Street – 65 and 45-storey towers with a 5-storey base proposed>

<2 Carlton Street – two 72-storey buildings with a 7-storey base proposed>

<YC condos (Yonge & College), 460 Yonge Street, 66-storeys under construction>

<501 Yonge Street – 52 & 25-storey condo buildings called The Teahouse are now under construction>

IN AUGUST TORONTO HOSTS THE ‘MOTHER OF ALL CONVENTIONS’ – A LIVE AUDITION FOR THE CITY

TORONTO couldn’t have asked for much more than this. It’s landed the convention every city wants – a gathering of the American Society of Association Executives. That’s the convention of convention planners, and for those in the tourism industry this is naturally a really big deal.

The Canadian tourism industry is planning to make the most of the opportunity. Tourism TORONTO has launched a campaign using phrases such as “In this city, it’s OK to let your guard down.” and “All flavours are welcome.”

TORONTO is easy to get to from almost anywhere. It’s safe, politically stable, has a healthy core, crime is relatively low, and it boasts a thriving arts, culture & restaurant scene. The city’s hospitality industry is working hard to build on these assets.

A ‘WHOPPER’ DOWNTOWN TORONTO PENTHOUSE IS UP-FOR-SALE AT A ‘WHOPPER’ PRICE

For sale a four-bedroom, 9,000 square-foot penthouse apartment in the heart of TORONTO’s Yorkville, with four separate terraces, 24-hour concierge service and it’s own elevator. Ready to move in. Its owners have begun divorce procedures.

The penthouse is on top of the 55-storey Four Seasons Private Residences Tower. But don’t get your hopes up. It’s on the market for $36-million.

WE’RE GETTING A SMART, NEW BRIDGE TO CELEBRATE THE EATON CENTRE’S 40TH ANNIVERSARY

British architectural firm WilkinsonEyre has designed a new pedestrian bridge, connecting the TORONTO Eaton Centre with Saks Fifth Avenue and the Hudson’s Bay deparment store. It should be in place by this coming fall.

WilkinsonEyre has done projects around the world. The IKEA Museum in Sweden and Guangzhou’s Financial Centre are two of them.  <RENDERINGS – CFEaton Centre>

SOUTH CORE IS NO LONGER ON THE WRONG SIDE OF THE TRACKS – IT’S TORONTO’S NEW BUSINESS HUB

TORONTO‘s Financial District has outgrown Bay Street. It’s spreading towards the waterfront, south of Union Station. South Core is expecting an influx of 20,000 new office employees and close to 10,000 new residents in the immediate future. Forecasters predict the area’s population will grow 80% to 130,000 by 2031.

This new neighbourhood is giving Bay Street North a run for its money when it comes to attracting large corporate tenants. The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce recently announced that it’s moving 15,000 employees from King and Bay to new headquarters in South Core.

CIBC will join head offices for Telus, the Health Care of Ontario Pension Plan, CI Financial Corporation, and Sun Life Financial. The Royal Bank of Canada (the country’s biggest) is moving 4,000 employees to the neighbourhood; Cisco Systems Inc. has chosen South Core for its new Canadian headquarters and one of four global innovation hubs.