Site navigation

Housing the Proles of Leslieville, or
Joe & Ian Do South Riverdale

Architectural critiques of South Riverdale social-housing developments

Middle-class residents of Leslieville, many of them arrivistes and parvenus, complain about all the social housing in the neighbourhood. Joe Clark bikes around the hood in the freezing cold photographing each development, and he and Ian Beanlands critique the architecture.

Available reviews

66 Walpole

Our first real ghetto! (ADDED 2006.08.30)

Three north-facing windowless roofs, each set back from the other. Children’s play sets sit on trapezoidal lawn area
1070 Queen

Six weeks in the making, we finally review the block-long leviathan. And we got an inside tour! (ADDED 2006.07.18)

Five-storey building in buff brick occupies a corner lot, with green girders visible on a  roof terrace
791 Queen

Run by the nuns and situated at the intersection of five streets. Quite a successful site, all told. (ADDED 2006.03.25)

Three-storey building in red brick sits behind front courtyard with benches. Tiny street alongside has buff-brick building tucked away in back
123 & 131 Coxwell

Tudor and stucco, together at last. And finally we’ve got some architectural background to cite. (ADDED 2006.05.08)

T-intersection shows green-and-cream stucco building on near corner and blue-and-burgundy mock-Tudor building on far corner

(Using the bigger thumbnail photos now)

502 Eastern

Four postmodern pods two doors down from the Hell’s Angels. The worst block to live on in the entire city. (ADDED 2006.03.27)

502 Eastern, looking up at front pods
802 Eastern

An ugly, sagging building smack dab on a dangerous corner. (ADDED 2006.03.14)

802 Eastern, corner entrance
137 Sears & 29 Louvain

Two buildings I thought were clones.

137 Sears, central pod
29 Louvain, rear entrance tower

Worst. Critique. Ever. (ADDED 2006.03.02)

1167 Queen

The wall of the parking lot is the nicest thing about it. (ADDED 2006.02.20)

1167 Queen, east side
1187 Queen

A warehouse. Given its occupants, how could that be a good idea? (ADDED 2006.02.13)

1187 Queen, front three-quarter view
The Woodfield: 1480 Queen

Another postmodern development in primary colours. But, as with the Maddy Harper Lodge, we quite like it. And is it really a deaf building? (ADDED 2006.02.06)

Front view of the Woodfield
Maddy Harper Lodge, 86 Jones above Queen

Postmodern housing for Indians. Does that make any sense at all? (ADDED 2006.01.30)

Front view looking up, Maddy Harper Lodge
1555 & 1575 Queen and 1080 Eastern

Three buildings in two complexes. Two of them are the wrong way to do social housing and the other is a less-wrong way. (ADDED 2006.01.23)

1080 Eastern, front view
126 Coxwell Ave. north of Dundas

A near-clone of 970 Eastern. That’s a bad sign right there. (ADDED 2006.01.16)

126 Coxwell, front view
970 Eastern Ave. at Woodfield

Subterranean entrance and a fortress-like atmosphere. And it’s on Eastern, a street unfit for human habitation. (ADDED 2006.01.09)

970 Eastern: Stairs to below-ground entrance
55 Pape Ave., south of Queen

Officially known as 43 Pape, and with a satellite building behind it on 17 Renwick. By far the most successful buildings in all of Leslieville. (ADDED 2006.01.09)

55 Pape: Central entrance tower


New critiques used to be added roughly once a week until we’re done. Now we’re committing only to a couple a month.