Sunny Doors

This past week has been a rough ride for residents of Canada and Ontario. The looming uncertainty of NAFTA negotiations with the US and Mexico and pending escalation in trade tariffs has made everyone uneasy about the Canadian economy. There are also clouds on the horizon in Ontario with last week’s election of a new Progressive Conservative government for the province. Where will the first cuts in services be made?

It has been hard to find any sunny ways these days, so this week I have tried to find some sunny doors to compensate. Here are my contributions to Norm’s Thursday Doors for June 14, 2018.

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sunny south in Toronto
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rising sun in Hanover

Neo-Classical Doors

My door theme for this week includes doors that are part of a Neo-Classical entry design. The first common elements associated with this theme are columns that have a Classical motif. In my first example, the columns are a “faux” element applied to the simple exterior of an industrial building. The other two examples include actual columns – with the third one having columns that physically support a portico above the main entrance.

The second common element is the fanlight window above each door. All three windows have radiating mullions which fan out from the top of the door.

All of these door images are from Toronto, where this style of architecture is often referred to as “Georgian.”

For more blog posts on doors, visit Norm’s Thursday Doors post for this week.

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Neo-Classical entry 1
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Neo-Classical entry 2
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Neo-Classical entry 3

Door No. 1 – Series 1

As a follow-up to my blog post on the Doors of St. Thomas Street, I have embarked on a search of other No. 1 Doors in the City of Toronto. This is my expedition to determine if being “No. 1” is reflected in the doors or entrance to a building, and it is a great way to explore this city with some purpose or intention.

This week I have a few doors to contribute to Norm’s Thursday Doors. I have dubbed this post “Series 1,” in anticipation that I will find more similar doors in the future.

Today’s post represents the results of a walk along Yonge Street, starting from Queens Quay, heading north to Bloor Street. But first, a brief history of Yonge Street. There is a heritage plaque at the foot of Yonge Street that explains its origins. The road dates back to 1796, which is “old” in Canadian terms – we only became a country in 1867.

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Being the original north-south arterial road, in a grid system of roadways, Yonge Street is the starting point in several ways. For instance, the numbering of all east-west streets starts at Yonge Street. As a result, it is possible to find addresses with the number 1 on either side of Yonge Street.

My first stop was at No. 1 Yonge Street, which is a commercial office building. The Toronto Star newspaper is one of the major tenants. There is nothing special about the doors to this building, so they are not featured here. However, there is one unique aspect to the entrance to this building; it is the only one I have seen that has its own Canada Post mailbox right outside the front door. Somebody had some influence here.

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One Yonge Street

The next two buildings are One Adeleide Street East and One Queen Street East. They are also commercial office buildings. Both buildings have shiny chrome revolving doors at their entrances. For those of you who live in warmer climates and may not be familiar with revolving doors, these help to reduce the amount of cold winter air that enters the building whenever someone enters or exits the building.

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One Adelaide Street East
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One Queen Street East

One Bloor Street East is a high-rise condominium tower that is nearing completion of construction. This 75 storey tower is being marketed as “the city’s most iconic address,” and it is visible from several kilometers away in all directions. Emerging across the street are the foundations of One Bloor Street West, which will become “The One” at 82 storeys when it is completed.

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One Bloor Street East


Old School Doors

Older schools have “old school” doors that are much more interesting than newer doors. They were designed to last, and they look good too. Here are a few examples of doors at schools in Toronto and Australia, my contribution to Norm’s Thursday Doors this week.

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Humberside Collegiate Institute, Toronto
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ALPHA Alternative School (formerly Brant Street School), Toronto
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Annette Street School, Toronto
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Bowral Public School, Bowral, NSW, Australia

The Doors of St. Thomas Street

Welcome to St. Thomas Street – a premium location for residential real estate – in the Yorkville area of Toronto. St. Thomas Street is only two blocks long, and is located just off Bloor Street (on a section dubbed the “Mink Mile”) and adjacent to the University of Toronto campus.

There is a mix of residential and commercial buildings along St. Thomas Street, but I have focused on the residential doorways in this week’s contribution to Norm’s Thursday Doors blog.

For each highrise residence, I have also included an image of the highrise tower. It was not possible to show you what is behind each door, so you get a glimpse of what is above each door instead.

One St. Thomas is a newer condominium tower that looks like it could belong in New York. That is by design – it is a twin to 15 Central Park West in New York City, designed by New York architect Robert A.M. Stern. Recent condo sales in this building have averaged around $1,300 per square foot. Popular musician Drake used to live here. Being number one has its cachet.

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entry to 1 St. Thomas St.

Directly across the street is Two St. Thomas.┬áThis is a purpose-built rental apartment tower which just recently opened. Sadly, the enrtrance to this building is very non-descript. The front doors look like they belong on any generic office building. The only feature is a copper-clad entry canopy. I recall that there used to be a tagline of “We Try Harder” for Avis when it was the second ranked car rental agency. Avis dropped this slogan after 50 successful years – 2 St. Thomas is the newer building, but it never tried to be better.

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entry to 2 St. Thomas St.

The University Apartments are in an older 1927 apartment building located on a heritage site at 8 St. Thomas Street. These apartments are also condos, but are sometimes available for rent.

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University Apartments

The Windsor Arms Hotel is located across Sultan Street at no. 18 St. Thomas Street. It is a boutique hotel and it is also an historic property. It was renovated about 20 years ago as part of a redevelopment that added high-rise condominiums to the site. The Residences at Windsor Arms are at 22 St. Thomas Street.

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Windsor Arms Hotel

Doors of the UK – Part 3

I have been diving deep into my archives to find a few more doors to post to share with the followers of Norm’s Thursday Doors. I managed to find some “old” doors from previous walking tours of the UK.

All of these doors were found in farms in various locations in England – Cumbria, Yorkshire and the Cotswolds. It is amazing how resilient the old wooden doors seem to be.

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arch with double doors
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arch with single door
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old tithe barn door