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by Paul Golini: Chair, BILD



Reaching new heights at the waterfront

I knew that the bottom of the Bayview extension was under construction, but since the Don Valley Parkway was closed for a charity ride last weekend, I thought it might be a good alternative route to get me close to downtown. As it turned out, the road has reopened and now takes you all the way down, under Queen Street East and Eastern Avenue to a newly-paved road that curves north and connects the up-and-coming waterfront neighbourhoods to King Street East.

The new road wraps around a new residential development-in fact, it was the first private sector development project announced in the West Don Lands precinct along Toronto's waterfront. It's called River City, developed by BILD member Urban Capital Property Group, and will bring five buildings with more than 900 loft-style condominium and townhouse units to the area, in addition to stores and restaurants to be built out in four phases. During my drive-by I could see that the first phase is well underway and it's looking great.

When people start moving in, the new road will serve an important function. It will connect the new waterfront residents to the streetcar line on King Street and to nearby neighbourhoods like Corktown and Riverdale. The connection will also serve the new residents of the Canary District, a master-planned neighbourhood just west at Front Street East and Cherry Street.
Adding student housing and affordable units to the mix in the West Don Lands precinct, the Canary District project by BILD members Dundee Realty Corporation and Kilmer Van Nostrand Co. Ltd. will first house athletes competing at the 2015 Pan American Games and then eventually house thousands of future waterfront residents.

Development will breathe new life into these waterfront neighbourhoods and with the newly-constructed road network, they will be well-connected to the rest of the city.

Paul Golini Jr. is Chair of the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD). You can read more from Paul and BILD by visiting the Association's official blogTwitterFacebook and Youtube accounts.