It's possible that an entire row of restaurants in Toronto will be demolished in the near future to make room for condominiums and office space.
Because of a new development application that has been submitted for 185-191 Dundas Street West, it appears that the end of the line is near for a group of restaurants that are predominately Asian in origin and that together make up a lively restaurant row in the Dundas and University/Little Tokyo area.
Indian Biriyani House, Yang Teashop, Lan Zhou Ramen, Sushi & Bento, Impression 1915, an Uncle Testu location, and perhaps the most infamous of the bunch, Hong Shing Chinese Restaurant, are some of the businesses that are in jeopardy of closing their doors. Hong Shing Chinese Restaurant is known as much for its controversial reputation as it is for its late-night food.
In the past, Hong Shing has been in the news for a number of reasons, including a conviction in a racial discrimination case in which four Black customers were forced to pay for meals in advance (the restaurant later made amends with the customers), as well as unproven allegations of unhygienic happenings, which the owners argue were taken wildly out of context and were misleading.
The most recent event that brought the restaurant into the public eye occurred in late 2021, when Hong Shing was the victim of a severe fire that caused significant damage to the restaurant's kitchen.
ICC Group, a development company located in Toronto, has plans to demolish the block of restaurants in order to create room for a 41-story mixed-use tower that will include new retail at street level, 19 floors of office space, and supporting amenity space, as well as 21 floors of condominium residences.
The illustrations give the impression of being preliminary and provide a straightforward massing diagram for the design of the project by Scott Shields Architects.
A tiered form with rounded edges includes a six-storey base and a 12-storey mid-section that contains office space. A residential point tower is located above the lower two volumes and is separated from them by an office amenity level.
toronto located at 191 Dundas Street West
The proposed skyscraper at 191 Dundas West would result in the relocation of a number of businesses but would bring a significant increase in the site's commercial presence. Artist's conception courtesy of Scott Shields Architects.
Although it is one of the few examples of a true mixed-use tower in this city, this structure only allocates a little more than forty percent of its almost twenty-four thousand square meter floor area to residential space. The remaining sixty nine point nine percent of the building is comprised of office space.
The residential component of the development consists of 135 condominium units, which are proposed to be divided as follows: 34 studios, 34 one-bedroom suites, 24 two-bedroom suites, and 25 three-bedroom apartments.
The residents who live in the region and are concerned about traffic congestion should relax now that they know this skyscraper would only add 55 parking spaces to the second floor of an underground parking garage.
The majority of shorter rides may be accommodated by the available 200 parking spots for bicycles. When combined with the neighbouring St. Patrick station on the Toronto Transit Commission, these modes of public transit would make it possible for the vast majority of inhabitants and workers to live and work without a car.
In spite of the active development application that is currently being examined by city staff, customers of these establishments probably won't have to worry about them closing anytime in the very near future in order to make way for demolition. It is typical for these plans to take several years to work their way through the city's planning and approval process.