While Toronto’s condo explosion is overwhelming most of the downtown, there are still pockets that have resisted the steel-and-glass invasion – for reasons both good and bad. One such pocket is the Queen St. East and Broadview Ave. area of the east end, whose grungy patina has been guarded over by the Broadview Hotel, (in)famous for its street-level tenant, Jilly’s.
But now the Queen-Broadview anchor is getting a new lease on life. Streetcar Developments has acquired the building and says it intends to restore the structure back to its former glory.
As the new owners of a treasured landmark within Toronto’s downtown landscape, Streetcar’s first priority is to address significant structural issues within the building. In late 2013, the City’s Buildings department issued an Emergency Work Order for immediate temporary structural measures in order to secure the building. To complete the permanent repairs in a safe and timely manner, the current tenant, the infamous strip club Jilly’s, whose lease was due to expire, will be vacating the property along with the hotel occupants.
“We have great affinity for the neighbourhood and we believe this building is a jewel of Riverside,” says Les Mallins, president and CEO of Streetcar Developments. “We will first be focusing all our efforts on making the building safe and restoring it to reflect its place in Toronto’s history.”
“Streetcar is based in Riverside, so this neighbourhood has a special place in our hearts,” adds Mallins. “Although rooted in loft development, Streetcar does not see this building as a residential condominium project. We are in the early stages of planning, but our focus is to revive this building to a landmark everyone in the area can be proud of.”