cube house toronto

The future is still uncertain for Toronto's bizarre cube house

When it was announced that Toronto's iconic cube house was slated for destruction, architecture lovers were up in arms. 

But it appears that plans to tear down the intriguing trio of giant green boxes at 1 Sumach Street, or at the very least, move them elsewhere, have been stalled —  for now. 

cube house toronto

Martin Trainor has lived in the cube house for nearly 20 years.

For more than 20 years, the Piet Blom-inspired cubes at Sumach and Eastern have mystified pedestrians and drivers heading to and from the Don Valley Parkway. 

But since the wedge-shaped property was purchased in 2018 by land developers Jeff Craig and Taso Boussoulas, many in the city have kept a watchful eye on this prized piece of architecture, waiting for its demise. 

According to cube resident Martin Trainor, a main tenant who's been living inside the structure for nearly two decades, there have been no plans announced yet. 

"No one's come around here for years," says Trainor, who works as a news producer and photographer with CBC. 

cube house toronto

The main bedroom in the cube house features a 20-foot ceiling,

Trainor says that, while real estate people did drop by the property back in 2018 as the property were being sold, there's been little noise since then. 

Full of natural light and greenery, albeit a little aged, Trainor's home is unlike anything I've been inside before. 

"I'm just grateful that this little cluster of jewels is still here, in this confluence of traffic," says Trainor.

One Sumach Street, which has stayed relatively the same aside from garden plots which were razed to become a parking lot, may yet lose its TriCube landmark that has sat at the periphery of mass change over the years. 

cube house toronto

Since its purchase in 2018, no plans have been announced for redevelopment. 

Trainor has been witness to all the developments brought along by the Pan Am Games, including the densification that came with the creation of the Canary District just south of him. 

"It's certainly blocked my view," he says laughing. 

But while the future of the cubes remains unsteady, Trainor maintains a pretty positive attitude about potentially losing his unique home in the future. "I'm hoping if and when the cubes have to go, there'll be some sort of motif remaining." 

Lead photo by

Fareen Karim

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