After over a year of construction, T3 Sterling Road, a mass timber office development near Dundas West subway station and Bloor GO and UPX station in Toronto’s West End, has progressed significantly, with the framing of the first two buildings moving closer to completion. Located in the southern corner of the Junction Triangle, T3 Sterling Road, like its Bayside sibling, has drawn attention through its bold and reformative approach to the office environment and cutting-edge sustainable construction methods.
T3 takes its name from the foundational values of the design approach: timber, transit, and technology, crafted by Hines to replicate the aesthetic of brick-and-beam buildings in transit-connected locations while providing best-in-class building systems and amenities . Here, Hines has teamed up with long-time partner DLR Group, the Chicago-based architecture firm, and Hazelview Investments, to bring T3 Sterling Road to life.
As the first phase of development moves along, the site is beginning to look like the modern office campus that it will ultimately become, largely due to the quickly-evolving state of the first two buildings; the East Building climbs 6 storeys and is located immediately beside the Toronto Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in the Tower Automotive Building, while next to it, the West Building reaches 8 storeys. Accessed via a new extension of the area’s road network, the two buildings together will offer 275,000ft² of office space.
Images captured early this week show the extent of the progress, particularly in the West Building, with timber framing in place to the uppermost of the building’s eight stores. Additionally, the images show GlasRoc sheathing installed up to the third storey, chosen for its resistance to Canadian elements.
Another notable milestone in the construction progress of the West Building occurred on Monday, when the first pieces of the development’s signature window wall system were installed. The image below shows floor-to-ceiling windows, nearly 12 feet tall with slick black finishes, that will soon cover the majority of the exterior of both buildings.
As for the East Building, we can see that the framing has reached the fourth storey, with posts in place for work to commence on the fifth.
Even with only a portion of the total exterior finishings installed, the framing provides a good idea of the completed effect, considering the minimalist and modern approach to the final design. Recreating the highly sought-after aesthetic of brick-and-beam industrial buildings, T3 Sterling Road thrives on the natural light pouring into the large, open floor-plates with high 11’9” ceilings, designed to appeal to tenants that hope to attract and retain top talent in the post-COVID employment environment.
The experience-oriented approach is aligned with mass timber construction in several unique ways. First of all, timber construction is the most sustainable building approach in terms of carbon emissions. Not only are emissions reduced by the lack of concrete used, the timber structure also stores carbon, 3,646 metric tons in this case, to be precise. T3 Sterling Road has also made sustainability a top priority by seeking Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification, which doubles down on commitments to energy efficiency in construction and operation. In this way, the use of mass timber for an office space becomes a transparent and outward expression of the values of a company in a time when values are central to any brand’s public image.
Furthermore, T3 Sterling Road is being built on the belief that the best kind of workplace is the amenitized workplace; beyond the premium retail space at grade in both buildings, features like private balconies at every level, rooftop terraces, an employee lounge and collaboration area, a one-acre private park, a fitness centre, and end of trip facilities for cyclists are just a few of the amenities that employees can expect to enjoy throughout their work week.
Phase 1 is expected to reach completion by this time next year, and the team hopes to begin with Phase 2 thereafter. Phase 2 will see a third building, the Foundry, introduced to the campus across Sterling Road to the east, along with the development of another park space.
UrbanToronto will continue to follow updates for this development, but in the meantime, you can learn more from our Database file for the project, linked below. If you’d like, you can join in on the conversation in the associated Project Forum thread, or leave a comment in the space provided on this page.
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