12 Degrees

15 Beverley Street, Toronto

Developer: BSäR Development Group
Units: 96
Storeys: 11
GFA: 82,215 sq.ft.
Completion Date: 2015

A playful exercise in massing

12 degrees was designed as an urban infill project, fitting into the context of a mixed-use residential area where the city block has buildings that include both the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Ontario College of Art and Design. Given the art gallery nature of the city block, the condo’s design became a playful exercise in massing and an anchor to the southwest corner of the block.

The design can be read as analogous to the stacking of toy blocks, with one of the blocks skewed at 12 degrees from the others. 12 Degrees is located in the historic Grange Park neighbourhood. Grange Park is a mixed-use but predominantly residential neighbourhood. The residential vernacular varies with a mix of working-class cottages, semi-detached homes to mansions from the former affluence one enjoyed by the neighbourhood. Many of the buildings have been converted to commercial use, art galleries, restaurants, and offices.

The building mass

The building mass has been broken into a base and a tower. The base of the building is three stories high and is composed of townhouse-style units that relate to the existing adjacent Victorian homes.

The townhouses repeat themselves in a series of glazed window bays and stone-clad piers, that refer to the Victorian roof peaks and projecting bays. The base opens up at the corner to expose the glazed main entrance and lobby.

Cantilevered glass penthouse

Built on a compact 36-metre front by 31-metre deep urban site, 12 Degrees consists of a three-storey glass and ledge rock-clad base under an eponymous rotated glass-clad mid-section, all topped by a cantilevered glass penthouse.

The three-storey street-accessed townhouse-style units at the base of 12 Degrees share in common masonry cladding, projecting bay detailing, and height with adjacent Victorian homes and row houses lining Beverley Street.

Skewed 12 degrees

The tower is fully glazed above the base and is composed of three parts that playfully shift back and forth from the building’s orthogonal grid. There is one portion of three floors high that is skewed 12 degrees. The skewed portion twists away from the corner above the main entry, helping to lighten up the building massing in that area.

We also used the stepping nature of the building massing to reduce the impact of the building on the neighbourhood. Shadowing was reduced and the building transitions down in height from 11 floors to three floors adjacent to the existing houses.

Considered urban design

In addition to its distinctive architectural appearance, 12 Degrees is noteworthy for its carefully considered urban design. The stepped form of the massing, transitioning down in height from 11 to three floors, reduces the shadow impact of the building on the neighbourhood.

The main entry and elevator lobby for the tower, marked by a hovering wood canopy, is located at the southwest corner of the building, closest to the vibrant commercial activity at the intersection of Beverley Street and Queen Street West. 

Intimate-scaled urban block

The building is located on an atypically intimate-scaled urban block with an extensive laneway system including a mid-block connection and a longitudinal lane. The layout of the service and access components of the building takes advantage of this block, offering particularly convenient access to the three-level parking garage as well as a servicing bay that is tucked into the lane system.

Unparalleled views

The top of the building also has amenities for the entire condo including a seasonal swimming pool and a large terrace offering unparalleled views of the Toronto skyline. In addition to the six, two-storey townhomes along Beverley street, 12 Degrees will include 85 units, ranging from 450-square-foot studios to 1,700-square-foot suites. Thirty-one of them will be two-bedroom units and nine condos will have three bedrooms.

Podium Design

The rhythm, height, and masonry materials of the adjacent Victorian townhouses were respected by our podium design. The brick warehouse to the rear inspired the design of the laneway side of our building. The building’s upper levels are arranged to provide for approximately ten units per floor, many featuring balconies afforded by the skewing massing. The top of the 32.2-metre high building has two penthouses one featuring a 600 sq. ft. terrace.

Consultant Team

GC: Empire Communities
Structural: Jablonsky, Ast, and Partners

Mechanical & Electrical: Able Engineering 
Interior Design: Studio Munge
Landscape: Terraplan Landscape Architects


2016 International Property Awards
Architecture Multiple Residence Canada

2016 World Architecture Festival
Shortlisted Housing