One for Yorkville's first 'vertical forest'

One for Yorkville's first 'vertical forest'

One for Yorkville's first 'vertical forest'

The Yorkville neighbourhood in Toronto, Canada, could become the site of the city’s first ‘vertical forest’. New renderings for the long-awaited 33 Avenue Road project bring to light a new design aesthetic for the project, with plantings along the east and west elevations of the tower.

The latest renderings of the Zeidler Partnership Architects and Richmond Architects design also reveal a more sensitive treatment of the ground level, with greater nuance applied to preserving the area’s intimate character.

Over the last four years, the Empire Communities and Greybrook Capital development has gradually evolved from a monolithic tower to a design that respects Yorkville’s street-level ambience. In the years since the project was first proposed, preservation of the now heritage designated property at 33 Avenue Road emerged as a City priority for the site.

The public space fronting Yorkville Avenue and the restored 33 Avenue property is now more clearly framed by the 30-storey tower, which rises above a simple wood-toned plateau.  A refined delineation between the tower and the ground level allows the high-rise to make an impact on the area skyline without compromising the streetscape, with the space of the existing York Square reconfigured into a more prominent plaza.

Along the lower levels, however, the ambitious landscaping programme could garner the lion’s share of the excitement surrounding the project. Adapting the innovative ‘green’ skyscraper model often identified with Stefano Boeri’s Bosco Verticale in Milan, Italy, renderings for 33 Avenue see a more subdued — and presumably winter-friendly — of this design aesthetic. Though the plantings only appear on the east and west elevations, an infusion of greenery would likely make the tower a highly recognisable presence in the area’s skyline.

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