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Heritage Restorations

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YWCA Elm Centre
YWCA Elm Centre YWCA Elm Centre YWCA Elm Centre YWCA Elm Centre YWCA Elm Centre YWCA Elm Centre

LEED Silver

YWCA Elm Centre

Toronto, Ontario


YWCA of Toronto/Wigwamen Incorporated
The Jean Tweed Centre


Regional Architects
Hilditch Architect

Project Completion Date

November, 2011

Type of Contract

Lump Sum

Project Value



Located on a block bordered by Edward, Elm, Chestnut and Elizabeth Streets, the new YWCA Elm Centre complex included a main 17-storey tower on Elm Street in addition to 10-storey and five-storey towers.  The 1848 heritage façade of an existing building on the site was preserved, restored and integrated into the design of the complex.

The new Elm Centre composed of two residential towers abutting a communal courtyard, administrative offices and head offices for YWCA Toronto and YWCA Canada.  Amenities include on-site playgrounds, a 200 seat lecture hall, a restaurant, a boutique, and an Aboriginal Economic Resource Centre.  The development also includes 300 units of supportive housing, including 100 units for women with mental health and addiction issues, 50 for women and families of aboriginal descent, and 150 at below-market rental rates.

The complex was design and constructed to LEED Silver certification requirements and in compliance with the City of Toronto Sustainable Development Guidelines.  The complex incorporated a number of sustainable ‘green’ features including installation of a geothermal well field below the site providing radiant in-slab heating and cooling, energy recovery ventilation systems, green roofs and rooftop gardens, and a tri-sorter garbage disposal system.