beer store closing toronto

Another Beer Store in Toronto is about to be replaced by apartments

Beer Store locations are closing across Toronto, swallowed up by new developments and calling into question the future of this once-ubiqitous retailer. 

The latest one on the chopping block seems to be a homey little location on a corner of East York.

A seven-storey mixed-use has recently been proposed for 380 Donlands Ave., currently home to a one-storey Beer Store and its parking lot.

beer store closing toronto

The Beer Store at the corner of O'Connor and Donlands is slated to be demolished for a new rental tower. Photo via City of Toronto submission.

Busta Ventures is hoping to transform the southwest corner of O'Connor and Donlands into 60,000 square feet of retail and residential. 

Spread out across the building's seven storeys will be 73 rental units, predominantly two-bedrooms, and two levels of underground parking with 58 spots. 

The design will include multiple stepbacks and a potential green roof with amenity space.

Judging by the current renderings, it doesn't look like Toronto-based firm TACT Architecture will be taking design inspo from The Beer store's trademark stucco look. 

beer store closing toronto

Busta Ventures is proposing a seven-storey building with 73 new rental units. Photo TACT Architects via City of Toronto submission.

And last month, news broke that a nine-storey building called The Oscar Residences is slated to replace the sprawling Beer Store property at Bathurst and Dupont

Replacing that particularly dated location of the Canadian beer retailer will be luxury condo units starting at $500,000. 

The Beer Store, which started nearly a century ago as a consortium of Ontario brewers, is still one of the only retailers in Ontario (alongside the LCBO) that's allowed sell beer in quantities larger than six units, like 12-packs and 24-packs.

The fading monopoly, largely owned by multi-national brewers Labatts, Molson-Coors and Sleeman (which is owned by Sapporo), take up a lions share of beer sold in the province, which sucks if you're an indie beer-maker in Ontario.

There are around 450 locations across the province, which cumulatively sell more than 80 per cent of the beer in Ontario. 

beer store closing toronto

The proposed building at 380 Donlands Ave. is not the first new development that may take over a Beer Store location. TACT Architects via City of Toronto submission.

Premier Doug Ford passed legislation to terminate the province's 10-year contract with The Beer Store in the summer of 2019, meaning the company's monopoly will come to an end. This will probably mean more beer in supermarkets and corner stores

That could mean a phasing out of even more of the locations, which, for better or for worse, for beige or for beiger, have been an integral part of Toronto's urban landscape for decades.

Lead photo by

TACT Architects via City of Toronto submission.


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