Toronto Community Housing (TCH) is the largest social housing provider in Canada and the second largest in North America. This project was planned and designed to fill a need for family-centred affordable rental housing in the rapidly developing Railway Lands West precinct. Not a typical residential building, our approach was to design a collective home for low income families that would foster a sense of real community.
The 35-storey tower and eight-ten storey podium provide a total of 428 units and 45,500 square metres of social housing and amenities. The Grade related units form the base of the podium, with retail on the corner opposite the public park. Three and four bedroom units are designed in an innovative skip stop section which minimizes internal access corridors and maximizes play/study space within the family units.
A community multi-purpose room on the second level also addresses the park, and a communal kitchen, playrooms and day-lit laundry facilities line the landscaped courtyard that occupies the roof of the podium – the common outdoor living room for the community. The roof of the west section of the podium includes planter boxes for urban gardening by the residents.