Randy McDonald (rfmcdpei) wrote,
Randy McDonald

[URBAN NOTE] On the transformation of Postal Station K and the Masonic Temple into condos

My choice of photos this morning, of Postal Station K, was intentional. The building has been sold off.

It’s not clear what the developer plans to do with the property, but it won’t be a post office for much longer. A sign is posted in the building to notify customers the post office will be relocating.

Jack Winberg, CEO of the Rockport Group, extended an olive branch to the community and said he wants to work with the residents to find a suitable solution to develop the heritage site.

“We know it’s a special site,” Winberg said. “I’ve been reading the press, I know there are a number of constituencies that think the building is important and I agree … but I want consult with the community, the planners and try to come up with a plan that works for everybody.”

“We’d like to be able to do what we can to preserve the front of the building, the true heritage part of the building. Maybe the back will go and we’ll put a condo of some kind behind it,” Winberg added.

A group of residents is vowing to continue to fight to maintain the historic integrity of the building and public access to it.

“It was sold like a piece of meat,” [local MPP Mike] Colle said outside Postal Station K on Friday afternoon.

So, too, Toronto's Masonic Temple.

After 95 years, the iconic Masonic Temple — the concert hall where Frank Sinatra, the Ramones and Led Zeppelin once rocked out — may permanently shut its doors and be turned into condos.

Bell Media confirmed Friday they “are considering all options,” including selling the historic building to developers, after they move their MTV Canada studios out of the six-storey landmark at the northwest corner of Davenport Rd. and Yonge St.

“We are moving the MTV studios to 299 Queen St. and, as a result, there will be no further production done at the Masonic Temple as of now,” Scott Henderson, Bell Media’s vice-president of communications, said.

“Staff were notified of it in September. The future of the temple has yet to be decided. They’re considering all opportunities, including potentially selling it. The real-estate team is trying to determine what the future will be.”

Filming of MTV-related shows stopped as of Thursday, Henderson said, adding there’s no deadline for a decision on the building as of yet.

According to the City of Toronto, the Masonic Temple was added to the list of heritage sites in March 1974, which protects some historical aspects of the building, including the facade and some interior features.

I'm inclined to think that these transitions, form heritage buildings to condos, are good things for Toronto. If these buildings aren't serving a useful function any more, or if other buildings could serve the job better, why not transform them, especially if the facades are kept?
Tags: architecture, condos, davenport road, eglinton avenue, toronto, urban note, yonge and eglinton, yonge street
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