Tag Archives: Sherbourne

Thursday Doors | August 17, 2017

“582 Sherbourne Street” James Copper House, Toronto

This week’s submission to Norm 2.0‘s Thursday Doors. 

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favourite door photos from around the world.

“582 Sherbourne Street” James Cooper House, Toronto

Today, a return to another of the grand old houses of Toronto’s Sherbourne Street. This one has fascinated me for some time now. Whenever I drive by, I’m drawn to the interesting statues installed on the property. So, when I had the opportunity to walk the area a few weeks ago, this was definitely on my list of places to check out.

I had no idea of the history of this majestic “Second Empire” style building. The building was built in 1881 for James Cooper, a wealthy merchant and show retailer. This area was one of the wealthiest places in Toronto at the time the house was built and it’s in the best condition. After Cooper departed, the building became home to the Keeley Institute for Nervous Diseases, an organization assisting those with alcohol and substance abuse problems. In 1910, it became home to the Toronto Knights of Columbus, who used the facility as a meeting and fundraising venue for almost a century. In 2008 the property was purchased by the Tridel Group, with the intention of building a condominium tower on the site, which is designated by the City of Toronto as a heritage building, so it had to be preserved. Or, in this case, moved.

It turns out, it’s also one of the heaviest moves of a building in Canadian history. In 2008, the 800 ton building was moved twenty feet east and five feet south from its original location, to make room for a condominium tower being built on the same property. The move cost the developer a reported $1M but preserved an architectural treasure from Toronto’s past. The developer has taken great care to maintain the house, which serves as an amenities centre for the adjacent condominium tower.

Oh, yes, and back to the statues, the property has several, all in a wildlife motif, with wolves, stags, and foxes attached to metal bases, with a reflected statue beneath it. The wolf and the fox sit horizontal, but the stag is a vertical installation, quite eye catching. I’ve included the Google Streetview link, though it does not do it justice, as well as an image of the house being moved.

The things you learn when you look for nice doors.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/120 sec; f/1.8; ISO 32

Thursday Doors | August 10, 2017

“572 Sherbourne Street” - Toronto

This week’s submission to Norm 2.0‘s Thursday Doors.

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favourite door photos from around the world.

“572 Sherbourne Street” – Toronto

Nestled among tall apartment buildings and office towers along Toronto’s Sherbourne Street, sits a small group of eight houses, in various states of repair. All are slightly different, but would have been built in the same time period. Over the years, different owners would add or remove features, making the houses even more dissimilar. That is part of what I find appealing about older parts of the city. Every building has its own character, its own story.

This one in particular still has what I assume is the original door, based on the width and millwork. I’m sure it has more than one coat of paint. The brickwork closer to the ground is starting to show the effects of many winters exposed to road salt and the numerous holes above the handrail are evidence of accessories added and removed over time.

It would be interesting to find other photos, across the years to see just how many changes these doorways overgo across time.

For those interested, here’s a Google Streetview image of the location.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/140 sec; f/1.8; ISO 25