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New in Toronto real estate: E Condos

Posted by Robyn Urback / July 5, 2012

E condos TorontoE Condos has been making Toronto's architectural elites drool. The pre-construction project slated for the northeast corner of Yonge and Eglinton is striking in its rendering phase, most notably by its pair of cantilever pools halfway up of the paired glass towers. Yes, this is the type of thing you see when you sort your Pinterest feed by "Popular."

The "eFinity" pools are just some of the many amenities planned for the "E8" and "E15" towers, which still have a long way to go before expected occupancy in 2017. A joint project by Bazis Inc., Metropia and Riocan with TMG Builders on construction, here's a breakdown of the coolest (or, at the very least, the "tallest") thing coming to Yonge and Eglinton.

E condos TorontoSPECS

Number of towers: 2

Exterior: Glass

Number of units: 736, 266

Number of floors: 64, 38

Unit sizes (in square feet): 424 - 739 (+ penthouses)

Starting price: $290,000

Parking: $58,000 (for 2-bedroom units over 700 sq.ft.)

Storage locker: $5,000

Maintenance: $0.52 /sq. ft.

Parking maintenance: $150 /mo

Locker maintenance: $29.95 /mo

Hydro included?: No

Amenities: 24-hour concierge, cantilevered pool and lounge (x2), gym, dining room, party room, guest suites, technology rooms, yoga studio, outdoor terrace (and more...)

Expected occupancy: August 2017

E condos TorontoTHE GOOD

Damn, those pools are cool. As much as I'd love to be a wet blanket and rhetorically ask about the safety of a couple of cantilever pools up on the 31st floor, I can't. Just imagine the view! (Limited only to those who can open their eyes underwater, mind you. Or those who don't fear social ostracization as a result of goggle-wearing.) Yes, I know Toronto seems to have a wee (read: awful) problem with glass falling out of the sky, but I should hope that E Condos is taking every necessary precaution, especially will all of this pool-centric attention.

Without a doubt, this development has location on its side. Whether you're a "Young and Eligible" fan or not, you can't deny that everything will be within seconds of the two new structures. There's grocery shopping and a movie theatre across the street, lots of bar and restaurant options right down the road, and a (proposed) underground connection to the subway and (to-be-constructed) Eglinton LRT. Residents will basically never have to go outside, not even have to leave their building to work out or go for a swim, and be able to bask in the satisfaction of having everything at their footsteps while maintaining a midtown address. It'll be Yonge and Dundas without the Ryerson kids or people handing out Jesus pamphlets.

And perhaps this is redundant, but I think the view (this time, from the suites) merits another touting. While some units boast a measly 17 square feet in balcony space (why not just a closet?) others come with wrap-around balconies totaling 257 square feet. Seeing as this is not downtown Toronto with a skyscraper ending every block, you might actually be treated to a great scene outside your bedroom window.

E condos TorontoTHE BAD

Cost. Can I say that again? Don't let the "Starting At..." or inoffensive $0.52 /sq. ft. maintenance fees fool you. You're going to pay for a unit at E Condos. While you may still be able to snag a unit for under $300k, you're undoubtedly going to get one that's under 500 square feet. Considerably so. Depending on the unit, you're looking at paying somewhere between $650 and $700 per square foot in either building, which is not chump change for us non-venture-capitalist types. And call me a pessimist if you like, but with E Condos' incredible list of amenities, I have a nagging suspicion that maintenance fees won't stay at $0.52 /sq. ft. for too long.

And the costs just increase from there. While the storage locker price is pretty standard at $5,000, parking for a whopping $58,000 is not. (I'm tempted to calculate the cost of parking per square inch at E Condos, but I fear the result will be overwhelmingly depressing.) Plus, residents who own both a locker and a parking space are looking at spending an additional $2,160 in fees, on top of regular resident maintenance fees. Renting is suddenly looking a lot more appealing...

The units themselves are somewhat underwhelming. Though they boast all of the now-obligatory double paned sealed windows, energy-efficient appliances, and nine-foot ceilings, the floor plans leave much to be desired. There is a noticeable lack of counter space in almost every unit, and the bedrooms boast barely enough room for a nightstand (nevermind two). I suppose such are the symptoms of a plan that turns a 734 square foot space into a 2-bed+den unit. In short, the suites are small. Better make good use of that yoga studio.

THE VERDICT

I'd very much like an affluent friend to purchase an E Condo suite and subsequently invite me over for an eFinity swim. I'll even bring the goggles. While there are surely those who would trade extra living space for fantastic amenities and a super-accessible location, I'm not one of them. With E Condos poised to bring a cool 1,000 people (though likely, many more) to the intersection in the next five years, the eligible at Yonge and Eglinton will get that much more competition. I think I'll sit this one out.

E condos TorontoWhat do you think? Would you live here? Add your comments to the thread below.

Discussion

39 Comments

Grim / July 5, 2012 at 09:23 am
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Yonge and Eglinton hasn't been "Young and Eligible" since the late 90s. Just stop.

Also, those pools will never be built as is. The Cheapening will occur.
TJ / July 5, 2012 at 09:30 am
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Maintenance/condo fees are friggin nuts if you have a locker and parking spot. Lets say you have a 700 ft unit w/locker and parking. Monthly cost is $664 plus hydro (probably around $35-40/month) = $$700+. Ouch! And how about a mortgage?
That is the highest monthly parking maintenance fees I have seen to date. I've seen quite a few recent condos which are $30-60/month. Renting a parking spot at a newer and core downtown condo is only $150-170/month.
Alex / July 5, 2012 at 09:36 am
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That corner currently has some of the best shops for Yonge & Eg: BMV Books, Kitchen Stuff Plus, TD Bank, What a Bagel, just to name a few. Plus directly across the street is the big square, which with this condo will now be in shade most of the day (that side was the last one left without any skyscrapers on it). This condo is going to ruin this intersection.

It's just incredibly stupid to build a huge condo on a major intersection (especially when you have one practically across the street!). That's where retail should be going, not housing. The condo should be going on a side street nearby, not the intersection itself. The pedestal will just be a big Bed Bath and Beyond or something, and won't replace all the amenities it is removing. I hope this project fails and they don't build it.
Rick / July 5, 2012 at 09:41 am
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Interesting to see the type of uber-yuppies that will waste good money on these glass-tacular sardine cans.
I guess builders are under the belief that there are dumb enough people to buy a glass box and are willing to throw away $600+ a month on crap they will not use.

Good job on making them rich.
Pk / July 5, 2012 at 09:42 am
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"It's just incredibly stupid to build a huge condo on a major intersection... The condo should be going on a side street nearby, not the intersection itself."

Huh???
Ron / July 5, 2012 at 09:47 am
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With developers unable to build a regular cheap condo in Toronto that can't hold it's glass intact, would anyone really trust the same shitty designs holding tons of water and people from certain death?

But I'm sure Toronto has building codes that would prevent that right? Just ask people walking on Wellington under those glass missiles waiting to fall.

Ariane / July 5, 2012 at 09:58 am
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LOVE the area but come on..the price is ridiculous for such a tiny space.
Dave / July 5, 2012 at 10:04 am
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E, as in one of several drugs you would have to be on simultaneously to think that buying here would be a good idea?

It pains me just to think what these poor fools will be paying in maintenance fees after 5 years.
Greaseball / July 5, 2012 at 10:06 am
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Buy on spec...then flip before it's done. Pocket $100k tax-free easy peasy. Or...buy, then rent to some 20-something douche from the outer-burbs who thinks toronto is bordered by spadina, lawrence, jarvis and the lake. Easy $.

K / July 5, 2012 at 10:07 am
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It's so hilarious how misinformed and opinionated commenters on this blog are.
milo / July 5, 2012 at 10:11 am
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the people here amaze me - which house is less than 600 a month to maintain?

granted in a crappy suburban house you get more space --
but you're always paying a giant amount of money to keep the home running.
AV replying to a comment from Greaseball / July 5, 2012 at 10:38 am
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People like you are about to take a big market bath VERY shortly
Alex replying to a comment from Pk / July 5, 2012 at 10:41 am
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Major intersections are supposed to be destinations, places people meet and go to. Look at Yonge Dundas, Yonge Queen, University Queen, etc. They have things like major retail and entertainment destinations on them. Housing is supposed to go on the quiet sidestreets in between (e.g. all the other condos in the Yonge Eg area). It keeps the residential area fairly quiet (better for the residents) and leaves the communal spaces open for the community.

Plus if you've ever been to that intersection or lived in the area you'll know that those stores generate a ton of foot traffic and add a lot of life to the area. If you replace all that with a big box store in the pedestal it just kills the intersection.
steve / July 5, 2012 at 10:44 am
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Of course many of theses building are badly built. The builders are following Ontario's Minimum Building codes, something they have to do, it's the law. It's the same code that builders use to build all those crappy suburban homes.
Minimum codes means build as cheaply as you can with poorest quality you can get away with.
What you get is all those questionably built homes staked on top of each other.
Aliengoo / July 5, 2012 at 11:02 am
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Number of units: 736, 266
Hope the Condominium Act's critical "owner" components are mostly updated by the goal of a 2017 move-in date.There are going to be a lot of renters within 2 years.Owner occupied units will be trapped trying to get bylaws requiring at least 50% owner approval in place to maintain a building's civility.The first board,condo property management is brought in by the builder who is motivated to
Soused / July 5, 2012 at 11:03 am
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The design and cost of this building is going in one direction, the condo market the other. On a positive note from an urban sprawl perspective I'd rather have an abandoned hole in the ground than a deserted subdivision. In hindsight this is going to look like a Ryugyong Hotel of an idea.
M replying to a comment from Alex / July 5, 2012 at 11:16 am
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The Y&E intersection is already a mess. Three of the corners have bank tenants but only one of those three corners also has street level retail (this is the TD Bank - which will be removed to accommodate this tower). What a Bagel is a ghost town after business hours end, so I'd welcome new tenants that don't go to sleep at 5pm. TD Bank will likely return on the ground floor, in a new renovated space.

None of this is in defence of the E Condos - which are the ugliest buildings I've seen in a long time. They should take note of Minto down the street, which built a beautiful courtyard and two coffee places with always-packed patios (Starbucks and SPIN - both great for the area). This area needs more stuff like this, and hopefully Bazis will build something into the N/E corner.
Ron / July 5, 2012 at 11:26 am
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The market is about to take a well deserved dive, and as the market goes down, and interest rates rise to where they should be anyway, buyers will walk in droves. The project will never see the light of day. The interest on the downpayments for the builders far exceed the penalty they will eventually pay for returning the 'borrowed' cash to the owners.
iSkyscraper / July 5, 2012 at 11:31 am
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This is a nice series, but the writers should include the architect, Interior Designer, MEP engineer and structural engineer in the writeup. It's a little bizarre not to read about any of the design professionals in the description.

As for the location, I know this corner very well. It's pretty much one of the best served transit intersections in the country. It is where tall buildings should go. We went through similar whining with the Minto buildings to the south, which were shortened to the point of looking bulky rather than attractive. Enough already!
j-rock / July 5, 2012 at 11:42 am
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Toronto is going to really regret this recent orgy of condo building one day.
Alex replying to a comment from M / July 5, 2012 at 12:06 pm
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What? Except for the subway entrance, they all have street level retail. SE has 7-11 and CIBC, NE has TD, Burger King, that hair supplies place, What a Bagel, the show store, Blacks, BMV, Kitchen Stuff Plus, etc., the NW has the square with the Yonge Eg Plaza. Remove the stuff on the NE corner and you take a ton away. I'm glad that TD Bank will go back in, but I doubt the others will make it. It's much easier for the condo developer to make one big easy to fill retail space than the bunch of small ones that generate street traffic and bring life to an area.

I agree tall buildings should go in this area, but they should not be built at the expense of the area. Since most of these units will turn to rentals anyway why not build this one block up just off Yonge on Roehampton? There are a bunch of smaller older apartment buildings there that this could replace without having a negative impact on the area, and it will still be very close to the Yonge Eg transit hub.

Umm, have you seen the Minto square? It is pretty dead no matter what time of day it is. Spin always seems empty, but I assume the starbucks does well (despite having a Tims up the street and another starbucks around the corner).
Cyril Sneer / July 5, 2012 at 12:56 pm
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3 exterior/pool shots, 1 suite shot. Typical condo marketing BS.
Mike / July 5, 2012 at 01:08 pm
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"you can't deny that everything will be within seconds of the two new structures. "

It won't have a record store as this monstrosity will take out Vortex, one of the city's best and longest-running.
Gordo / July 5, 2012 at 01:13 pm
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While I think the pool concept is kind of cool, it somehow seems wrong to put so much architectural emphasis with two large towers like this around a couple swimming pool. I'd still pay money to try out the pool(s) all the same.
har / July 5, 2012 at 02:07 pm
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If anyone puts any faith in a developer rendering, they need their head examined. There is no obligation on the developer to match what marketing documents say and you'll never EVER successfully get it written into your agreement of purchase and sale to make it binding. Good luck!
jen / July 5, 2012 at 02:25 pm
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Is this thing going to take out the whole block up to Roehampton? Including the Duke of Kent? I always liked that pub.
Graham replying to a comment from jen / July 5, 2012 at 03:03 pm
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It's not taking up the entire block (so far). Both Vortex and the Duke of Kent are currently not part of this development.

The developers own the TD site, the Burger King/Beauty Supply site east of Yonge and the site housing What-A-Bagel, Town Shoes, and Black's Camera (if it's still open). They also own the rental building at 25 Roehampton Avenue.

It's an odd shaped parcel with one tower at Yonge and Eglinton and one on Roehampton.
jd replying to a comment from j-rock / July 5, 2012 at 04:01 pm
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Hardly. Cities love condos... I bet if they could, they would knock down every home and allow development for as many condos as possible.
M replying to a comment from Alex / July 5, 2012 at 05:12 pm
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The Minto space is wonderful. Wander down near the Minto buildings one sunny day and check out the courtyard and the two patios I mentioned. They are vibrant and full of life until late evening. There's nothing like it in the immediate area of Y&E.

Part of the public sell on the renovation of the RioCan property on the NW corner (which is removing a significant chunk of the open space) is each of the corners should contribute to open space at the intersection. Whatever Bazis settles on, I hope it'll include "public" gathering spaces like Minto did: public-use courtyards, patios that stay open late, etc.
Alex replying to a comment from M / July 5, 2012 at 05:27 pm
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These are the towers across from the subway on Yonge, right? With the big blue stick lights on top? I must be looking at the wrong courtyard because everytime I go by it is empty. Is it the courtyard with the big funny statue in the middle?
Ron replying to a comment from M / July 5, 2012 at 09:13 pm
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Hope you manage to sell your unit. I pass the Minto buildings a few times a week, and have often thought of what a ghost it turned out to be, versus all the marketing that went into them. It all seems like so much fuss and bother now, especially since the city cut the heart out of the development..
Bubba / July 5, 2012 at 10:20 pm
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FAIL!
Tom / July 5, 2012 at 11:34 pm
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Vomit.
n / July 6, 2012 at 12:18 pm
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Minto is crap - windowless bedrooms, small spaces, crappy built. As someone mentioned one day (10 or 20 years from now) we will be paying for all these new crappily built condos.
Those maintenance fees are high and you are not going to look at yourself swimming on the 31st floor, unless you can somehow get out of your body (the cool view will not look so cool)... Thankfully this will never be built. 2017 planned move-in date, make it early 2019 which is 7 years for this crap.
Chris / July 12, 2012 at 01:50 pm
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This thing goddamn ugly. What was the inspiration? A Tasco appliance warehouse?

7x8 bedrooms? Seriously? This monstrosity is designed for investors from the ground-up. No end-user is going to want to live in these.

Ohhhhh glass walled pool!!!11!. I'll bet you in 10 years that shoddy junk will leak like a sieve.

We need a real estate crash so investors stop propping up these garbage developments.



Dave K replying to a comment from Grim / August 23, 2012 at 10:04 am
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"Yonge and Eglinton hasn't been "Young and Eligible" since the late 90s. Just stop."

I half-agree with you. The area's still dominated by the under-35 set, so I'd argue that the "Young" part still holds. It's the "eligible" that's questionable. Judging by the number of strollers I have to dodge and weave around on the sidewalks in that part of town, I'd say most of those young folks living at Yonge & Eg are well spoken-for at this stage.
Bubba / February 7, 2013 at 10:26 am
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insanity!
ejfa / October 4, 2013 at 02:18 pm
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I bought this condo... is it that bad??
Condo / October 15, 2013 at 09:18 am
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I bought one of these units, can't wait to move in

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