Development has Museum of Contemporary Canadian...
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Feb 26, 2013  |  Vote 0    0

Development has Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art looking for new home

Parkdale Villager

A stretch of Queen Street West currently home to the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MoCCA), a gallery and an art school, is now the site of an amendment application for a nine-storey condominium building.

A preliminary report on the zoning amendment application for 944 to 952 Queen St. W. made its way through Toronto and East York Community Council Feb. 26.

This application proposes to amend the zoning bylaw in order to permit the redevelopment of the mixed-use building with 151 homes.

The rezoning application is required to permit the height, scale and density proposed by the applicant.

According to Ward 19 (Trinity-Spadina) Councillor Mike Layton, a community consultation meeting will be scheduled and a final report is targeted for the summer.

The preliminary planning report identified a number of issues to be resolved including the height and density, building sitting and massing, amenity space and parking and vehicular access.

MoCCA has been renting a 990-square-metre re-purposed textile factory on the site since 2005. Layton said loosing the gallery will be a blow to the stretch, but MoCCA has been thinking about finding its own, larger, permanent space.

“The issue with MoCCA does go a little deeper because they were outgrowing the space,” Layton said. “They are looking for an expansion that can’t be accommodated there.”

Layton has been meeting with MoCCA regularly to help them look for other options.

“They would like a lot of space,” Layton said. “They would like to rival some of the contemporary art museums around the world, which means an aggressive expansion.”

Layton hosted a pre-application meeting with some area associations representatives and the developer in January.

“The feedback there was that people thought it was a little too ambitious, a little too big for the site,” Layton said. “As well, the increasing concern is that with these new buildings, they tend to have higher rent on the main floor in the mixed-use portion and it tends to attract only a single type of commercial operations, big banks and Shoppers Drug Mart.”

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