Best Renovation (no addition) over $500,000 – BILD 2022 Renovation and Custom Home Awards
This property is a mid-unit row house, only twenty-two feet wide, with natural light available from just two narrow sides. Fairmont was tasked to create an Oasis in the middle of Yorkville, surrounded by other decades-old units and gardens, and with careful design and materials were able to create serenity in the centre of bustling Toronto.
The biggest challenge we faced during construction was access to the site, particularly on a narrow street with no access from the road as it is situated in a courtyard. We had no ability to use cranes, so everything had to be built to allow assembly on site, such as the floating steel stairs. The large lift and slide doors and the breakfast nook bench had to be carried through two neighbouring backyards. Working on top of an underground garage restricted access to the plumbing and mechanical systems.
We enlarged the rear windows and opened the living space, transforming it from the compartmentalized, uninviting labyrinth it was into an open concept, expansive living space. Early in the construction phase we removed the second and third floors, maintaining the structural integrity with temporary shoring and bracing, enabling us to raise the ceiling height for the main floor and provide flexibility for the layout of our stair design.
In order to reduce the impact of our renovation on the adjoining units, we built our structure with platform framing, reducing the contact of our structure with the common building elements. We turned the entire third floor into a bright, open master suite, with exception of the mechanical room which was situated there to eliminate the interruption of mechanical services throughout the main floor. We also exposed the existing cathedral ceiling and gables by removing the dropped ceiling and making it a focal point.
The stairs were designed to be the focal point of the entire unit, allowing light to travel throughout from all floors and the skylight. The continuous glass partition makes the best use of space and natural light, minimizes separation to the stairwell and gives a feeling of flow and connection. The stairs were designed to float off the wall, preventing sound from traveling to neighbouring units, with ambient lighting on the mono stringer to highlight the feature wall.
The rear terrace became an extension of the breakfast nook with floor to ceiling windows, a contemporary, linear exterior fireplace was positioned so that it may be enjoyed from the terrace and the breakfast nook. Directly outside the kitchen there is a covered patio which can be enjoyed year-round. Rather than removing it, the mature Birch tree became a focal point by building a floating stone patio around it. Millwork was built into every possible space creating storage whilst maintaining the home’s sleek design, with custom wood and black powder coated linear vertical knife-edge handles notched out of the door fronts and concealed hinges throughout.
Contact Fairmont Properties for more information.