Lamenting Toronto's Missing Middle

Christopher Hume surveys Toronto's "mid-rise crisis" and asks why the city has made it nearly impossible to build "the urban residential form par excellence."
May 29, 2012, 9am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Bemoaning the dearth of six- to eight-storey development, Hume blames overzealous NIMBYs and the "outdated and excessive parking requirements, emergency exit regulations and construction techniques that make the economics of mid-rise so tough."

Hume speaks with architect Roland Rom Colthoff, whose firm RAW Design has a number of mid-rise condos in the works, and more on the horizon, about the struggles of working with the city and the growing demand for the housing type.

"There's an explosion of interest in mid-rise right now," he [Colthoff] insists. "The price of condos makes these projects viable. Plus there's a cultural shift going on; there are new ideas about sociability in the city. Mid-rise buildings are not for investors but people who want to be part of a neighbourhood and what's happening."

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Published on Tuesday, May 22, 2012 in Toronto Star
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