Life and the City | Toronto Real Estate Team

QA SERIES: Family-Friendly Condos

This post is a part of our ongoing Q&A Series in which we address various hot topics relating to the GTA real estate market, about real estate in general, or about our Team.   

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The phrase “family-friendly condo” was once an oxymoron; Toronto's condo dwellers used to be a fairly equal mix of first-time buyers and empty-nesters. But as an increasing number of young families are choosing to live downtown, or close to it, this emerging housing segment is bringing significant change that has been noted by building developers and City planners alike.

The City has come up with a new set of guidelines to encourage development that will make Toronto’s vertical neighbourhoods more family friendly — something planners say enhances those areas for all ages.  In the report Growing Up: Planning for Children in New Vertical Communities, the City planning department takes a look at how multi-unit housing in high-density communities can better accommodate households with children. The report addresses the indoor and outdoor challenges of highrise living, setting out specs for every aspect of condos - from room sizes to walkability - that allow kids to move independently in their neighbourhoods.

Developers, for their part, are swapping ultra-modern micro-units for multi-bedroom suites with ample square footage. The number of new two- and three-bedroom condos coming to market today has increased significantly. 

Today, one-third of Toronto parents are raising their young families in a condo or apartment. Living in condos is now a lifestyle choice, not solely made for financial reasons. Many enjoy living an urban lifestyle, where young parents are able to spend more time with one another and with their children thanks to a shorter commute and easy access to all amenities.

But the questions that remain are, what should a young family be looking for, and where are the family-friendly condos in Toronto?

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What makes a condo "family-friendly"?

  1. Two or more real bedrooms
  2. A floor plan with a logical layout, so that it feels spacious
  3. Ground floor units can give the feeling of a townhome
  4. Ample storage, including a nicely sized storage locker
  5. Family-friendly building amenities, including a play area, pool, theatre room, craft rooms, party rooms for hosting birthday parties
  6. A park or greenspace within walking distance
  7. Daycare in the building or within close proximity
  8. Located in reputable school district
  9. Located close to public transit

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Family-Friendly Condos in Toronto

Many developers are introducing kids rooms at the planning stages of new condos in Toronto. Here's an overview of exisiting family-friendly condos in the city:

The Eglinton Kids RoomThe Eglinton

Midtown - Yonge and Eglinton

FEATURES: 
  • Kids room with child-friendly flooring and furniture with interactive learning station (The developer, Menkes, consulted extensively with early childhood development specialists to create the kids room)
  • Landscaped outdoor terrace
  • Central location - no car needed for daily errands

Harbour Plaza Outdoor PlaygroundHarbour Plaza

South Core - Financial District

FEATURES: 

  • Mixed-use community – a unique integration of live-work-shop-play
  • On-site outdoor playground and track (The developer, Menkes, consulted extensively with early childhood development specialists to create these spaces)
  • Central location - no car needed for daily errands

Garrison Point Kids RoomGarrison Point

Fort York

FEATURES: 

  • Features a variety of suites including a number of multi-bedroom floorplans
  • 2.5 bedroom plans in the condo towers, while the townhomes come with up to 3.5 bedrooms
  • Six parks and parkettes surrounding the building, from the lakefront Coronation Park to Liberty Village Park, which comes equipped with a children’s playground and public art
  • 4.5-acre park, outdoor pool and splash pad, and a kids room
  • Many daycare and public school options in the vicinity, plus a YMCA child care program and a Parenting and Family Literacy Centre

CityPlace SuperclubCityPlace's Navy Wharf Condos

Spadina and Lakeshore

FEATURES: 

  • Pool, games room, squash and tennis courts, as well as an outdoor patio and garden
  • The Superclub, which includes a basketball court
  • An outdoor playground behind the building
  • Near outdoor parks like Canoe Landing and the Harbourfront's parks
  • Montessori school at the foot of a CityPlace building on nearby Bremner Boulevard, which also features a daycare

Palace Pier Games RoomPalace Pier 

Humber Bay Shores

FEATURES: 

  • Offers many larger units - there are two- and three-bedroom suites, ranging from 1,550 square feet up to more than 3,000 square feet.
  • Many family-friendly amenities, including a games room, social events room, BBQ area, patio area, swimming pool, table tennis room, squash courts, library and more
  • Located on the Humber Bay of Lake Ontario, with Martin Goodman Trail running along the water and through parkland
  • Easy access to the Queen Elizabeth Way, Highway 427, and the TTC’s Humber loop
  • Close to grocery stores and all amenities

Old Mill Condos Party RoomOne Old Mill and Two Old Mill

High Park

FEATURES: 

  • Each building offers large units of up to 2,850 sq ft
  • An array of active amenities includes a party/media room for hosting birthday parties or movie screenings, a yoga studio, a swimming pool, and a creative recreation space
  • Toronto’s famed High Park is located right across the street

25 The Esplanade Skypark25 The Esplanade

Front and Yonge

FEATURES: 

  • Half-acre SkyPark deck on the sixth floor, with 6 gas barbeques, seating and children’s play space
  • Families coordinate group outings - the building’s parent Facebook group circulates a list of residents that want to be visited by trick-or-treaters on Halloween
  • 24-hour, on-site security
  • Located near the vibrant St. Lawrence Market, offering easy access to all amenities
  • Convenient to major transportation corridors and key transit hubs such as Union Station and two subway stops
  • Within easy reach of the revitalized waterfront and the popular Distillery District

River City Kids PlayroomRiver City

Corktown

FEATURES: 

  • Pre-planned community condo development that has tailored its amenities to offer something for every stage of life
  • Offers many two-bedroom condos across all three phases of the project
  • Amenities include Yoga and Pilates workout spaces, and a children’s play area with jungle-gym, arts and crafts tables, plus toys and games
  • Nearby several schools as well as beautiful outdoor parks including Corktown Common

Corktown Commons Park Pavillion SplashpadCanary Commons

Corktown

FEATURES: 

  • Offers many larger two- and three-bedroom condos
  • Next to Corktown Commons Park, an 18 acre park that's home to sprawling green spaces, playground areas, a splash pad, barbeques, picnic tables and even a fireplace
  • Close to Cooper Koo YMCA, and 82,000 sq ft, fully accessible facility complete with two pools, an indoor track and gymnasium, weight room, cardio machines, green roof, kids’ play structure, cycling studio, fitness training space and more
  • Many family-friendly amenities in the building

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As a greater number of young families look to Toronto's condos as an alternative to homes in the suburbs, builders will continue to offer larger unit options in fantastic neighbourhoods in the downtown and other central areas of the city. Special amenities which cater to kids, including playrooms and jungle-gyms, will become more the norm than the exception. 

If you have any questions about any of the developments listed above, if you'd like to keep in the know about upcoming projects, or if you want to begin a search for the perfect family-friendly condo in the city, just reach out to us.

 

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