Toronto Loft Conversions

Toronto Loft Conversions

I know classic brick and beam lofts! From warehouses to factories to churches, Laurin will help you find your perfect new loft.

Modern Toronto Lofts

Modern Toronto Lofts

Not just converted lofts, I can help you find the latest cool and modern space. There are tons of new urban spaces across the city.

Unique Toronto Homes

Unique Toronto Homes

More than just lofts, I can also help you find that perfect house. From the latest architectural marvel to a piece of our Victorian past, the best and most creative spaces abound.

Condos in Toronto

Condos in Toronto

I started off selling mainly condos, helping first time buyers get a foothold in the Toronto real estate market. Now working with investors and helping empty nesters find that perfect luxury suite.

Toronto Real Estate

Toronto Real Estate

For all of your Toronto real estate needs, contact Laurin. I am dedicated to helping you find that perfect and unique new home to call your own.

 

Toronto Loft Conversions

Westside Lofts - 700 King Street West Westside Lofts – 700 King Street West
The Westside Lofts is a successful renovation of a former office building, designed by world-renowned Young and Wright Architects. Situated in the Northwest corner of Bathurst and King in one of Toronto’s most upcoming and trendy locations – King West. The Westside Lofts’ features are impressive and dramatic – 11-1/2″ ceilings, hallways are wide and the windows are over-sized, and the suites are spacious. The suites have barnyard style doors, mirrored closets with lots of space and parking is underground.
Email or phone 416-388-1960 today if this building interests you.
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West Village Lofts - 550 Hopewell Avenue West Village Lofts – 550 Hopewell Avenue
The West Village Lofts is an upscale boutique loft project located in mid-Toronto, expertly converted from an ObusForme factory by Stafford Homes in 2004-2006. This neighbourhood is called the ‘Design District’ as it hosts various home decor and fashion businesses. The West Village Lofts project by Stafford homes is famous due to the conversion of an old factory into gorgeous lofts. This boutique loft conversion contains 29 unique residences, all with an array of quality features and finishes. The beautiful exterior is done in an architectural stucco finish and has new double glazed oversized commercial grade windows to allow plenty of natural light into each suite.
Email or phone 416-388-1960 today if this building interests you.
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Windsor Lofts - 412 Jarvis Street Windsor Lofts – 412 Jarvis Street
Converted from a century-old apartment building, these lofts have a degree of character that is hard to find in a city full of new condos. A few of the grand mansions that once lined the street are still standing and there are major revitalization plans at work in the area. Most of the lofts have balconies, decorative fireplaces and 9-foot ceilings. They have been artistically restored and renovated. This is the only New York-style brownstone that is available in Toronto. Bay windows and large bathrooms add to the feel of old world luxury. Prices are low for the size, as are the condo fees.
Email or phone 416-388-1960 today if this building interests you.
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Woodlawn Church Lofts - 11 Woodlawn Avenue West Woodlawn Church Lofts – 11 Woodlawn Avenue West
One of only a handful of church lofts in Midtown Toronto, these lofts are housed in a rare and hidden upscale converted church on the fringes of Summerhill, near Yonge and St. Clair. With only 6 hard lofts in the building, they tend to be quite large and range from 1,840 to 2,341 square feet. There are 2 spectacular penthouses with private elevators and all of the lofts feature hardwood floors, cathedral ceilings, gas fireplaces, 3 bathrooms, underground parking, lockers and terraces. With prices starting around $1 million, these lofts are not in everyone’s budget.
Email or phone 416-388-1960 today if this building interests you.
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Worx Lofts - 436 Wellington Street West Worx Lofts – 436 Wellington Street West
Carved from the old Monarch Building (originally the Croft Building), the Worx Lofts are located just west of Spadina Avenue on Wellington. The Worx is an authentic loft complex with large lofts averaging 1,200 square feet – they have 10-1/2 to 12-foot ceilings, exposed wood columns and ceilings, exposed brick and large windows. The Worx Lofts is a wonderful loft conversion in a great location close to the Financial District, with easy access to the Gardiner Expressway and Lake Shore Blvd.
Email or phone 416-388-1960 today if this building interests you.
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Wrigley Lofts - 245 Carlaw Avenue Wrigley Lofts – 245 Carlaw Avenue
Converted from an old Wrigley gum factory, it is just north of the Garment Factory Lofts and Printing Factory Lofts, across from the i-Zone Lofts. Located in the studio district part of Leslieville, these true open concept loft spaces have 16-foot ceilings with concrete floors and ceilings. The Wrigley Lofts are huge open spaces with large fluted columns and warehouse windows, these are classic New York-style hard loft spaces. Some have mezzanine bedrooms, with a variety of different staircases. No outdoor space with any unit, though, and all of the parking is surface. One of the only loft buildings with 1,400 to 1,600 and 2,000 square foot lofts.
Email or phone 416-388-1960 today if this building interests you.
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With large open spaces and huge ceilings, loft conversions have long been popular among artists for the area they offer in which to work. Toronto and other major metropolitan centres are seeing an increased demand for loft developments due to the convenience offered by a do-it-yourself, unrestricted space. Keep in mind when looking for lofts in Toronto that they are much more in demand than ever before; combined with the natural real estate prices in the Toronto area this means that loft seekers can’t expect their space to come cheaply – lofts are more expensive than standard condominiums.

The conversion of old warehouses to loft units is commonly called “hard” lofts (as opposed to “soft” lofts, which are new from the ground up). This hard loft style is what is offered in buildings such as The Candy Factory Lofts, Argyle Lofts, Toy Factory Lofts and many others.

There are certain characteristics that are essential to loft living. Loft owners are typically inclined to create their own space while still maintaining easy access to important areas and amenities of the city. Toronto offers several developments that can meet the requirements of any potential loft owner.

Converted lofts have a certain allure. With high ceilings, open floor plans, rough-hewn floors and brick walls, they are a hip housing alternative for many urban professionals. Today’s loft dwellers embrace new-age urban living in all its glory. If you crave something eclectic, out of the ordinary and convenient to all the city has to offer, a loft may be for you!

One definition for a loft is “An appeal against convention- convention in thinking, convention in building and convention in living. They are a celebration of open concept living and unconventional spaces brought about by the considered application of imagination and a rejection of mass-market housing.” I like that concept, as it embraces the main concept behind a loft, to live in an extraordinary space.

The modern boom in the conversion of such spaces into living areas came in the 1940s in the SoHo District of New York City. By the 1970s so many of these conversions had been done that the city was forced to re-zone the area to make such conversions legal. By the 1980s the concept was spreading first across the United States and then to Europe and Asia. As the trend grew it caught the attention of developers identifying a new market. Developers being developers did not let a lack of owning an existing warehouse or factory building to convert stop them from moving into the new market. Thus the new word loft began to be applied to units in ground up new construction. Needless to say the term grew fuzzy.

The origin of the word loft comes from the Old Norse “lopt” which means upper room or air. In 19th Century English usage the word came to mean the upper stories of a warehouse or factory. Strangely enough, the truest sense of the word is found in the newer soft lofts, those with the 2nd floor exposed and overlooking the main floor. We all tend to think more of the converted factory or warehouse when we hear the word loft, but that is more a secondary meaning, one that has evolved to become the main meaning.

What is a “hard” loft?

A true loft is a conversion of a vintage factory or warehouse. They have a harder edge as they are usually constructed of concrete or “mill” construction of exposed brick, original wood posts, beams and floors. Typically, these lofts have an open floorplan and unfinished ceilings that are at least 10 feet high with exposed ducts, plumbing and electrical. Examples include the Candy Factory Lofts, Liberty Lofts and the Toy Factory Lofts.

What is an “artist live/work” loft?

Toronto bylaws allow for the development of buildings with “artist live/work” zoning. The first of these developments appeared in 1982 on Shanly Avenue (near Bloor and Dufferin) and most featured minimal finishing, 16′ ceilings and steel frame construction. The City’s zoning restricted their use to people who were engaged in a precisely defined list of artistic activities. Over time these buildings have come to be occupied by people who simply enjoy the loft life.

But there are very few lofts in Toronto that are truly live-work, in that you would be able to operate a full-time business out of them. Standard residential zoning allows for 25% business use – a psychic in the front room, aesthetics in the basement, for example. But if you want to work – and not live – in your unit, then you are looking at single digit options.

Here are some of the unique joys of the loft life:

* Industrial buildings – The term loft began in New York and Chicago when renters and owners began converting old industrial buildings into living spaces. The original tenants were artists who craved the high ceilings, large windows and open floor plans typical of converted warehouses and factories.

* Open spaces – The primary benefit of loft living is the large open spaces that allow you to live and move how you want, rather than having your movement defined by a permanent floor plan of walls, doorways and rooms.

* Define your areas – In a loft, the floor plan can be fluid and ever changing. You can set up a sleeping area in one part of the space, then move it somewhere else if you have guests or if you just need the area for another use. Kitchens and bathrooms are more permanent, of course, but temporary partitions, hanging curtains, or even changes in floor covering can define other spaces.

* Eclectic style – Another nice aspect of many lofts is the opportunity for eclectic design and decorating. For example, a loft might feature soft, delicate window treatments on reinforced factory windows, or a modern couch sitting on a hundred-year-old hardwood floor. This mixture of old with new and practicality with comfort can form a wonderful esthetic that makes the most of a loft’s mixed-use nature.

Regardless of the type of loft, all lofts should have certain basic common elements:

* Open, flowing floor plans
* Minimal uses of interior walls to define space and doors to close off areas
* High ceilings – some definitions set minimum ceiling heights at twelve feet or it is not a loft just a condo with high ceilings
* Exposed piping, ductwork, structural elements
* Large windows
* Access to the sky often with roof top gardens or decks
* Easily merges living and work space, blurring the lines between workplace and residence
* Mixes traditional mediums with modern finishes – concrete, metal, stone, brick, wood used freely alongside of drywall, ceramic tile and vinyl

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Contact Laurin Jeffrey for more information – 416-388-1960

Laurin Jeffrey is a Toronto Realtor with Century 21 Regal Realty. He did not
write these articles, he just reproduces them here for people who are
interested in Toronto real estate. He does not work for any builders.

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