A New Look at Frank Gehry's Toronto Towers
3. June 2022
All renderings courtesy of Great Gulf, Dream, and Westdale Properties
Developers Great Gulf, Dream, and Westdale Properties have unveiled design details for Forma, a two-tower residential development in Downtown Toronto designed by Frank Gehry.
Forma was not the first name for the Frank Gehry-designed multi-tower residential project on King Street. The project was started by developer David Mirvish about a decade ago and took the name of its main protagonists: Mirvish+Gehry. Following a few years of apparent inactivity, in 2017 Mirvish sold the development to Great Gulf and its partners Westdale Properties and Dream. Gehry remained on the project that is now called Forma and is being billed as a "a homecoming masterpiece designed by Frank Gehry," who was born in Toronto, as Frank Owen Goldberg, on February 28, 1929.
East tower facade
The just-released renderings focus on the East Tower, which at 73 stories is the shorter of the two towers (sales for the first condo tower are set to start soon). An asymmetrical assemblage of block-like forms define the massing of the tower, while folded metal panels form a grid between windows and curtain wall covers some facades. In a press release from the developers, Gehry explained his approach: "Every city in the world has its own light and the light is modified by the buildings in the city. I wanted this building to capture the essence of Toronto. It’s not like everywhere else. The light is different. The heritage is different. It’s a different place. I hope that is what people see when they look up."
King Street lobby
The Gehry-designed lobby is inspired by the Group of Seven and the ties between the natural landscape and Canada's identity.
While Gehry designed the lobby for the East Tower, with it stone walls, undulating furniture, and striking ceiling sculpture, the remaining interior spaces were handled by designer Paolo Ferrari. His Toronto studio designed amenity spaces that are strategically dispersed throughout the building rather than in one area; they include the Creator's Club and adjoining Maker's Studio, the Health and Wellness Retreat, and the the 73rd-floor Grand Suite. "Our intention was to craft purposeful spaces that oscillate between social and serene," Ferrari explained, "Toronto is an unrelenting, energetic city that, at the same time, also has incredible connections to the lake and nature. We wanted to capture a balance between the exuberance and the restorative."