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Tuesday, October 31, 2017

House of the week: 110 Donwoods Drive

This hyper-modern house at 11o Donwoods Dr. in the prestigious Hoggs Hollow neighbourhood is sure to divide opinions. Some will love the bold architecture and design, while others will say they'd prefer something homier.

110 Donwoods Drive TorontoWhat you can't say is that this property isn't unique. The rounded kitchen alone would set this place apart from pretty much every other home in Toronto. It's reminiscent of Bar Raval minus all the warm wood tones. 

110 Donwoods Drive TorontoThe other notable design feature is the multiple levels over which this home is spread out. For all its square footage, it actually only features three above ground bedrooms (there's a fourth in the basement), which speaks to the open concept and general airiness. 

110 Donwoods Drive TorontoOver and above the opulence inside the house, the secluded backyard is surely a highlight. The pool doesn't look so inviting in these autumnal photos, but it's easy to imagine just how nice it must be in mid-summer, surrounded, as it is, by a veritable forest. 

110 Donwoods Drive TorontoSpecs
  • Address: 110 Donwoods Dr.
  • Price: $5,988,000 
  • Lot Size: 75.8 x 138.5 feet
  • Bedrooms: 3 +1
  • Bathrooms: 5
  • Parking: 8
  • Walk Score: 17
  • Transit Score: 75
  • Listing agent: Sharon Soltanian
  • Listing ID: C3969315
110 Donwoods Drive TorontoGood For

Modern design fans with deep wallets. This is a statement house if there ever was one, so you can expect a buyer who plans to entertain regularly. 

110 Donwoods Drive TorontoMove On If

The architecture doesn't move you. I doubt that the utter lack of walkability will bother most people interested in laying down $6 million for this place, but it might be a factor for some. 

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Thanks to Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage for sponsoring our house of the week. All editorial written and selected by blogTO.

by Derek Flack via blogTO

This amazing light tunnel is opening just outside Toronto

The top 10 events in Toronto this November

From cheesecake to horse parades to live music, there's no shortage of things to do this November in Toronto, so start planning your weekends and thinking of ways to get out of work. There's no better way to fight the oncoming cold weather than by getting out there and doing things!

Events you might want to check out:

Cinesphere opening weekend (November 3-5 @ Ontario Place)
The Cinesphere is back! Head down to Ontario Place as regular programming resumes at this iconic cinema with screenings of Dunkirk and Beauty and the Beast.
The Royal Winter Fair (November 3-12 @ Direct Energy Centre)
Kind of like the Ex of the fall, the Royal Winter Fair is a tradition that takes Torontonians inside the world of farming, grooming, pageant shows, baby animals, and yummy food.
Indie Week Canada (November 7-8 @ The Hideout Toronto)
6 nights, 20 venues, and over 250 musical acts are front and centre in Toronto between November 7 and 12 as part of the annual indie music showcase. Experience a mix of local acts from Toronto and Mississauga as well as international bands from places like Dublin, Nashville, and beyond.
ArtAttack (November 9 @ Buddies In Bad Times Theatre)
Every year, Buddies welcomes hundreds of art lovers and adventurous shoppers for an outrageous art auction that's as much a party as anything else. This year's theme is an art-filled disco beach party, so wear your bathing suit!
Evening at the Market (November 9 @ St. Lawrence Market - South Market)
The massive food hub opens up for a night of food, drink, and entertainment in the historic st. Lawrence Market. Guests can embark on a culinary adventure which is basically unlimited, seeing as your ticket includes all food and drinks at the event.
Chris Rock (November 11 @ Air Canada Centre)
The famed American comic hits the Air Canada Centre for his Total Blackout Tour. Don't expect to take cell phone pics at this one. The whole blackout idea is very serious as no phones are allowed.
Long Winter (November 17 @ Tranzac Club)
Back for its sixth season, the Long Winter concert series returns with its beloved policies still in place: pay what you can tickets, all ages, all access.
The Cheesecake Factory grand opening (November 21 @ The Cheesecake Factory)
The much-hyped Cheescake Factory will finally open at Yorkdale this month. You can expect big lines and frenzied excitement over the 200+ item menu.
The Gentlemen's Expo (November 24-25 @ Metro Toronto Convention Centre, North Building)
Picture a GQ magazine in real life and you essentially have the Gentlemen's Expo, a trade show featuring the best in style, tech, music, sports, cards, sex, food, gaming and more. Whether you're a dude or a fan of dudes, this show is the place to be.
Christian Dior (November 25 - March 18 @ Royal Ontario Museum)
In celebration of the House of Dior’s 70th anniversary, the ROM explores the brilliance behind Dior’s dramatic creations that revived the entire Paris haute couture industry. This new exhibit runs through the end of November until the spring.

by Corey Van Den Hoogenband via blogTO

Popular bistro Le Select says huge tax increase could force it to close

Small businesses are starting to feel extreme pressure from rising property tax rates in Toronto.

As the cost of property skyrockets in the city thanks to the development boom, tax rates are increasing beyond what many believe is a sustainable level for small businesses.

The owner of downtown bistro, Le Select, fears it may fall victim to this trend.

Frédéric Geisweiller, the owner, says that the city needs to step in to prevent his and other businesses from being forced to close their doors or sell to developers.

Geisweiler says he is facing a 55 percent increase on his tax bill, which is based off the hypothetical or potential value of the property, something he says he has no control over.

Le Select's annual taxes would increase to over $203,000 by 2020 if the current rate trend continues. 

Joe Cressy, councillor for Ward 20, has helped to table a plan that would create a new tax class for small businesses, including creative spaces like arts and culture facilities.

Unfortunately, the bill cannot be completely passed by the city, but would require provincial permission. The Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) controls property value taxes in Ontario cities.

MPAC bases property values off a buildings' "best use," or potential use, rather than its actual standing. For small businesses, this means increased taxes when they're surrounded by dense developments.

In the case of Le Select, the surrounding area is developing extremely quickly. Developments like Wellington House and The Well are adding new density to an area that's been somewhat removed from the condo boom thanks to the old Globe and Mail building.

Similar property tax increases for small businesses along Yonge St. have already begun to push out longstanding stores and restaurants, though some relief has been issued.

How this all plays out may determine whether Toronto will keep its vibrant small business scene amidst the mega developments currently sweeping the city. What it seems proponents of small businesses are searching for is a little balance.

by Michael Ott via blogTO

Toronto starts to transform King St. for pilot project

It's time to get prepared for the King Street Pilot Project, which will soon transform one of Toronto's primary streets.

Construction on King Street for the transit and pedestrian-based project has already begun. Crews were spotted today removing traffic lines and installing new signage along the street in preparation for the pilot's debut.

Construction workers unload machinery at King and Bay Streets. Photo by Michael Ott. 

The project is officially set to open November 12, and will severely limit the amount of vehicular traffic on King Street thanks to a slew of new restrictions

The pilot stretches from Jarvis to Spadina, turning this stretch of King into what's being referred to as a "transit priority zone."

Construction workers install a new "no left turn" sign at Church and King. Photo by Michael Ott.

New rules for traffic will including forced turns at key intersections and bike boxes for cyclists. 

Many curbside sections of King are blocked off with construction fencing. Photo by Michael Ott. 

Drivers, pedestrians, cyclists, and transit riders should double check the new route ahead of its scheduled start day to make sure they know how to travel down King. 

by Michael Ott via blogTO

Breathtaking photos of fall colours in and around Toronto

Fall colours have swept Toronto and surrounding areas across Ontario, turning the landscape into a variety of warm hues. A late September heat wave put a bit of a damper on vibrant foliage in the city, but those travelling out of town have been treated to magnificent displays.

by Derek Flack via blogTO