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Lanterra Developments under siege for falling glass

Posted by Staff / August 1, 2011

Lanterra DevelopmentsLanterra Developments is under siege in the wake of falling glass at their Murano Condos near Bay and College. According to the Toronto Star, last night was the fifth time glass has fallen from the building at 37 Grosvenor Street this year. The highest one was from the 35th floor and thankfully residents and passerbys have remained unscathed to date.

But that hasn't stopped real estate agents and residents from taking to Twitter to tweet their two cents about the ordeal. As the screengrabs below illustrate, there's bubbling disillusionment about the quality of work being done at Lanterra backed projects. They've yet to formally comment on the glass that fell today, but I suppose this suffices as a buyer beware warning for anyone interested in any of their current and upcoming projects.

Lanterra DevelopmentsLanterra DevelopmentsLanterra DevelopmentsLanterra DevelopmentsLanterra DevelopmentsLead photo by greyvdm in the blogTO Flickr pool.

Discussion

20 Comments

Neil / August 1, 2011 at 11:39 pm
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That's not good for anybody.
BobTheTorontoBuilder / August 2, 2011 at 12:07 am
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Of course someone has to lose an arm or maybe a leg then something will be done. Five cases of glass falling and nothing being done is pushing luck a little too far. I hope someone decides to sort this matter promptly for everyone's safety.
nate / August 2, 2011 at 12:15 am
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ddale8 had a sharp comment:

"What are the odds that the Murano building would have the worst glass in Toronto?"

http://twitter.com/#!/ddale8/statuses/98208516862513153
gadfly / August 2, 2011 at 07:51 am
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This is merely the tip of the iceberg. I venture to say EVERY new project has issues similar to this or worse. Being in the industry, I have heard of much worse in other downtown projects.
Depending on the state of acrimony between the Board and the developer, a lot of threats and obfuscation could be going on right now at that development. The developer will blame the residents (it is possible, you know - everything from drilling into the frame of the glass to hang pictures or curtains, to having a heater blow on the glass to eliminate fog on the glass - I have seen it all) while the Property Management may be stuck in the middle. New construction presents many, many challenges.
Think of it this way, your brand new Toyota has the windshield fall off one fine day: if you go to Standard Auto Glass and pay to have it replaced, odds are you will get stuck paying for it. On the other hand, it may be weeks before the Toyota dealer gets permission to fix it under warranty if it's an odd case. In the meantime, should you drive your car? Will the manufacturer pay for a rental?
It's even more complicated than that with Tarion (new home warranty program in Ontario) involved and the sub-contractors who installed the glass. Good developers SHOULD pay for the repairs and then go after the sub-contractor; however, if the defect is endemic to the design, well, let's just say I wouldn't want to own a suite in THAT building!
In a project I worked in recently, we had 3 cases of cracked glass. From the time it was reported to the time we managed to get those 3 sheets replaced was about 3 weeks. We brought in our own glass people to investigate (they were doing us a favor since it was unlikely they would be paid for any of the work) and in 2 of the 3 cases they determined it was 'home owner fault.' I must say, however, it was fascinating watching these guys do their forensic work to determine whether the cracks were the result of settling, factory flaws or homeowner neglect.
shlepster / August 2, 2011 at 09:12 am
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The city, province and developers are all in bed with each other. Wait 10-15 years when all these new homes and condos start falling apart!! Tarion is a joke!
John / August 2, 2011 at 11:18 am
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Luckily none of these new glass condos have generated any pedestrian activity around them.
The Real Johnson / August 2, 2011 at 02:45 pm
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FYI, as of my lunchtime walk to Burrito Bandidos on Grosvenor, the glass is definitely being replaced today. Also, CTV is standing by in an idling van in case more glass falls. Pretty exciting news day apparently.

John: there is actually considerable foot traffic on Bay. Kind of a busy street actually...
Robin / August 2, 2011 at 07:43 pm
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Shameful... when will the city ban such bad developers fro any further development I ask?
When someone is fatally injured?
What are the city counselors and planning department going to do about this disgusting matter.
Once is bad enough 5 times is unforgivable and should be dealt with promptly in the appropriate way.
infernalmachine replying to a comment from shlepster / August 2, 2011 at 08:00 pm
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totally agree - this condo boom (aka bubble) is encouraging crap construction - because developers know they'll get away with it.

on the upside, my other half will make a killing working construction/reno when these garbage shacks start to come apart at the seams.
steve replying to a comment from infernalmachine / August 3, 2011 at 02:15 pm
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Tell me about it. All these new stucco and paper-maché homes going up fall apart at that 15-20 year mark, or earlier. They don't build them like they used to, post-war.
Ian / August 4, 2011 at 10:29 am
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Given that the balcony glass is tempered, is it not relatively less likely to cause injury when it breaks due to how it shatters into fine, small pieces instead of jagged chunks?

Of course, given that its falling from the 35th floor, the height might make the difference moot.

Any architects around here?
the lemur replying to a comment from Ian / August 4, 2011 at 11:05 am
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Apparently it can break into little diamond-shaped pieces. It's not something you want falling from the sky in any shape.
Max Imperfect / August 4, 2011 at 02:42 pm
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A shard of glass falling from 100 ft will cause serious injury - the alws of physics apply - mass x force of gravity and then add in the sharpness factor and there will be injury.
Max Imperfect replying to a comment from BobTheTorontoBuilder / August 4, 2011 at 02:46 pm
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those who assert that there have been 5 cases of shattering balconies are feeding of the short memory of some and the false information from the developer.
The first shattered balcony was around a year ago on the south elevation of the North tower. This piece shattered onto the canopy glass along Bay street and was barely noticed by City authorities (Police, Fire, Building).
The glass balconies have been shattering on all facades ever since then. Far more incidents than 5.
Tim / January 8, 2012 at 03:30 pm
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Condo workmanship and quality is going down the drain. I rent a semi-luxury? unit (thank God I did not buy it) on Nelson Street in a building a couple of years old. Guess what: One elevator is usually out of service, one heating unit does not work and the other one is noisy and cranky, all the plumbing trim is falling apart, one or two days a month I have a cold shower, not hot), kitchen cabinetry doors do not hinge, Penthouse units complain about the noisy elavators, we all wake up to the banging and beep beep of the 6.30 AM garbage pick up....
Bo / June 29, 2012 at 04:29 pm
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They seem to have a bad rep but i'm still excited for The Britt at Bay/Wellesley. Shaping up to be a very innovative project.
dmg / July 17, 2012 at 11:18 am
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Been almost a year and far from done with the glass, during the purchasing of this condo i was out on the balcony measuring when i moved in, all doors to bacony were locked. Crews have been working 4 hour days max no more than three days a week. No updates ever come from management other than positive, never a reason why something isn't happening. Weather is perfect today, a clear sunny 32 degree celsius Tuesday and no workers to be found. I place completion around spring 2013, hard to imagine when buildings under construction can be done in weeks. Buying a Lanterra unit was by the far my worse mistake, will never happen again. The water pipes are already going in the twin tower on 37 Grenville. Buyer beware? Buyer avoid like cancer.
dmg replying to a comment from Bo / July 17, 2012 at 11:22 am
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Spoken like a true Lanterra employee.
dmg replying to a comment from Bo / July 17, 2012 at 11:23 am
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@Bo: spoken like a true Lanterra employee.
Jessica / January 11, 2014 at 02:22 pm
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Lanterra strikes me as the worst condo-developer in Toronto, and I've only lived in their Murano condo at 38 Grenville St. for two years. They cut corners in construction (thin walls and floors unpadded so sound travels easily, laminate floors and tiles laid down with gaps, cheap paint on the walls, non-insulated window glass that drives up heating costs, a heating/cooling system that's as loud as a mid-sized vacuum cleaner, amenities that are either broken or shut down indefinitely, a shortage of elevators -- 3 in a building with 10 units on each of 43 floors, a garbage system that is shut down daily at least twice). They cut corners with their building management (Vero Property Management which is loath to respond to resident's concerns, hires an inefficient security company because it's cheaper, which blames residents rather than fixes issues for them, and has contractors enter resident's units while they aren't home to fix issues with no previous warning.) And finally, they have a track record of these issues.
Before buying or renting any condo unit in this city, find out who the developer is and their pick for a management company. If it's either Lanterra or Vero, don't even bother to see the place.

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