alias 120 church

Developer calls Toronto condo tower a blazing beacon of rock & roll attitude but yeah right

A new condo tower is gearing up to rise 45 storeys from the southwest corner of Toronto's Church and Richmond intersection, but it has come at the price of a cultural landmark serving the city's LGBTQ community.

The project from Madison Group will replace a surface parking lot and the former Club120, a nightclub that was shuttered in 2020 after 14 years in the neighbourhood and demolished in 2021. The project footprint will wrap around holdout property McVeigh's Irish Pub, whose owners refused to sell and will now see their establishment surrounded by the new behemoth.

Stylized as ALiAS for no apparent reason, the new tower at 120 Church Street will bring 546 condominium suites, 18,000 square feet of amenity space including an experiential pet spa (huh?), and over 7,000 square feet of street-level retail space to the intersection, packaged in a curvy tower designed by Teeple Architects and Turner Fleischer Architects.

With so many new condo towers popping up in Toronto, developers are pressed to find creative ways to differentiate their projects from the range of other options. It usually comes down to location and price for buyers, but that hasn't stopped the marketing minds behind the city's development boom from coming up with campaigns that stretch ever further into hyperbole to cut through the mix.

Marketing material describes "glazed black brick designed to 'cascade' down the building façade, topped with an iridescent gold crown meant to ignite the evening sky like a firework," which is a super jazzed up way of describing some gold-tinted finishes framing upper-level windows and a mechanical penthouse.

Granted, this is actually shaping up to be a pretty nice project, but based on the marketing, you'd think the project team revolutionized the condo game or something.

But the project glorification doesn't stop there, with Josh Zagdanski, Vice President of High Rise at Madison Group, claiming the building will be a "blazing beacon of rock & roll attitude meets edgy sophistication," an easy nominee for the most ridiculous marketing language of the year for what really just amounts to another condo tower among many.

If you can get over the developer's bold claims about the building's design, the project will bring benefits to the intersection worth noting. Any surface parking eliminated or new housing created in the core is undeniably a good thing for the city.

Add in the street-level retail, which will include space for patios, and a new public park centred around an art display, and this is an overall win for the neighbourhood.

Lead photo by

BINYAN Studios via CNW Group/Madison Group

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