Toronto’s Glass Walled Condos

Aside from the mustaches the hottest topic in Toronto this November relates to a CBC article discussing the longevity and efficiency of glass walled condos.  Given the city’s enormous building growth (see this great info graphic) this issue resonates strongly with those who live and work in these glass towers.

Replacing glass every 25 years or so certainly isn’t a new concept – but buildings have only recently been constructed with exteriors primarily consisting of glass.  The biggest concern for owners of these properties is whether or not the maintenance fees adequately represent the depreciation of the glass.  Given the reaction by stakeholders to this article we’re thinking that perhaps they do not.  When future expenditures are generally known they can be properly accounted for in the monthly maintenance fees, if not the gap in funding can result in large increases in these costs and thus maintenance fees or a special assessment (lump sum) in order to fund expenses.

One question we have been asked recently is whether we would sell a glass condo given this recent information.  The answer is of course – these buildings offer spectacular views!

As a brokerage which prides itself on transparency and ensuring its clients are well informed we would want to fully explore the buildings’ funding position and check if engineers have properly accounted for the replacement of glass walls in the Reserve Fund Study (an engineering report that is revised every three years and outlines the lifespan and replacement cost of building elements).  The key is ensuring a buyer understands the ongoing costs associated with his or her investment. Timing can be extremely important with condo purchases and some buildings may be a great short term investment but not offer the same returns over a lifetime.

Ontario’s building code will change this January (2012), requiring all high-rise buildings to be 25 per cent more energy efficient than the Model National Energy Code, a voluntary standard for buildings that will become the mandatory minimum in Ontario.   It will be interesting to see how construction changes to reflect increasing efficiency standards.


The Carlaw in Leslieville! Oct 20th is your VVVIP Oportunity for Floor Plans and Prices.

The Carlaw by Streetcar Developments

VVVVIP Access Alert: Oct 20th Spring Realty will have priority access to the floorplans and prices. Please contact us for front of the line access to the hottest project Leslieville has seen since the launch of Worklofts and Flatiron. Include you phone #, email address and price range. We will contact you the moment we have details re: next steps. To learn more about the South Riverdale Community visit our Neighbourhood Page here.

Leslieville was buzzing with excitement  back in March 2011 when Streetcar Developments put up their sign on their newly acquired 345 Carlaw Ave. They purchased this building as well as the white ones to the North and East for just over $12 Million at the end of 2010. It was such a refreshing sight as we were all so disappointed with the release of Showcase Living Lofts in the empty lot at Colgate and Carlaw. We won’t get in to how terrible Showcase is or how it belongs somewhere in the 905 and how I will never set foot in to that sales centre again. That’s a story for another post. I’ll outline some points below about the development, oh, it’s going to be called “The Carlaw Lofts” with the tag line “your stage”. Very nice, very very nice!

  • 12 Story glass and aluminum structure (similar to the Flatiron across the street) on the NW corner of Dundas and Carlaw
  • Stacked Townhomes to the East (about 3 stories high) main level will be live/work
  • Maintaining part of the original building!
  • The ground level of the main building will feature a glass enclosed public event space for farmers markets, art shows, music events. Will be available for all sorts of events. Sort of a way to give back to the community (as every building should)
  • Total of 340 units making it the most dense development in the Leslieville Area (Showcase to have 230 if it ever sells enough to build)

On October 17th I had a conversation with the sales team and they confirmed that some units will be priced at under $500/sqft! This came as a huge surprise to us; we assumed it would be in line with other developments at $600/sqft. The Carlaw is sure to sell out very quickly as resale lofts and condos in the area are currently achieving up to $650/sqft every day!  The stacked townhomes may be slightly less while the PH’s could be more. One thing we know is that Streetcar Developments has yet to disappoint us, we love their product and will do out best to support it. Below are the latest renderings.








On September 28th, 2011; the Spring Realty Team had a conversation with the Sales Team of The Carlaw which confirmed our front of the line access. We will have floor plans and prices very soon and will be able to start selling before other Brokers and the general public by the end of October. It’s best if you contact us with the Subject Line: The Carlaw and we will get right back to you with details.


Ara Mamourian – Broker of Record/Owner – Spring Realty Inc.