10 Dundas East

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10 Dundas East
March 2008 Toronto Life Square.jpg
Location Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Opening date 2007 (phased)
Developer PenEquity
Management Bentall Kennedy (Canada) LP
Owner 10 Dundas Street Ltd.
No. of stores and services 40
Total retail floor area 360,000 ft² (33,444 m²)
No. of floors 13 (10 above ground and 3 concourses)
Parking N/A

10 Dundas East (formerly Metropolis and Toronto Life Square) is a retail, office and entertainment complex development on the north-east corner of the intersection of Yonge Street and Dundas Street in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The project was delayed several times, and sits on a large parcel of prime land in the city's commercial core, on the north side of Yonge-Dundas Square. Originally owned and developed by PenEquity Management Corp., the complex is now owned by 10 Dundas St. Ltd.[1]

History[edit]

The future site of 10 Dundas East, circa 1985, when it was still occupied by a Mr. Submarine restaurant and a video arcade

Prior to the 1998 the site was occupied by several buildings including the O'Keefe's Brewery (formerly Victoria Brewery) and a two-storey structure at the corner. From 1949 to 1974 it was home to tavern Brown Derby and in the 1980s as a Mr. Submarine location (many views of that intersection, and the local area as it looked in 1986, can be seen in the movie Short Circuit with Ally Sheedy). All the buildings were demolished in the 1980s and 1990s.[2]

The project was approved in 1998 with the opening planned for 2000. The land was expropriated by the City of Toronto immediately afterwards,[3] and while construction boarding soon went up, the project suffered shutdowns and major delays.

Exterior shot during construction, June 30, 2006

Under the control of developers PenEquity, construction began in 2003. A phased opening started in late 2007. The Yonge & Dundas 24 movie theatres (which in the early planning stages had been a 30-plex) opened on March 28, 2008 by AMC Theatres, with twenty-four digital auditoriums. As per the original agreement; some cinemas are used in the morning as classrooms of Ryerson University. On May 8, 2009 in time for Star Trek, AMC introduced the first ETX Theatre at Yonge & Dundas. The ETX theatre is known as Enhanced Theatre Experience and featured a 20% larger screen, 11 channel audio and 8.8 million pixels providing four times the resolution of HD. After Cineplex Entertainment bought the theatre at 10 Dundas East, the first ETX Theatre was replaced by UltraAVX with Dolby Atmos on February 14, 2013 in time for A Good Day to Die Hard. By October 2010, IMAX opened at Yonge & Dundas 24.

When it opened, the complex was renamed "Toronto Life Square" after the local magazine. After the building was placed in court-ordered receivership in 2009, St. Joseph Communications, the owner of Toronto Life magazine, initiated a court action to have the magazine's name removed from the complex. The building was renamed "10 Dundas East" in September 2009.[4] Entertainment Properties, a Kansas City-based real estate investment trust that had provided construction financing for the project in 2005, acquired the complex in March 2010.[1] Bentall Kennedy (Canada) LP, a major Canadian real estate advisor, acquired the property in March 2011. Cineplex Entertainment acquired the Yonge Dundas 24 theater from AMC Theatres in July 2012 and was rebranded under the Cineplex Cinemas brand.

Architecture[edit]

10 Dundas East in 2008

The project was built in an L-configuration around a number of existing buildings, including a parking garage belonging to the adjacent Ryerson University; in exchange for the air rights to build over its land, Ryerson gained use of the movie theatres as classrooms during daytime hours.[5]

The exterior facing Dundas Square is primarily covered with giant video screens and static billboard advertisements of various sizes. The Yonge Street facade is made up of curtainwall store fronts with a glass and steel canopy overhanging the sidewalk. Toronto Star architecture critic Christopher Hume wrote a lengthy piece in the newspaper entitled "We don't deserve this horrorchitecture", which decried the building as a "nasty dark grey bunker".[3]

Retail[edit]

10 Dundas Square East is anchored by a Cineplex Cinemas 24 screen movie theatre, a Future Shop store, Adidas Sport Store and restaurants including Jack Astor's and Milestones.[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Coordinates: 43°39′24″N 79°22′51″W / 43.656761°N 79.380727°W / 43.656761; -79.380727