For what seems like the first time in nearly 10 years, there is true movement at the southwest corner of George St and Murray St. While you’re sitting there trying to map out which corner we’re referring to, it’s the site of the old YMCA which has seemingly been dormant for years.
The historic building, constructed in 1895, was once one of the busiest in our fine city until the YMCA of Central East Ontario moved to its current location on Aylmer St. in 2007.
Based out of Toronto, Atria Development focuses on converting older known properties into residential, commercial and industrial uses rather than doing away with them and starting from scratch. Their past projects speak volumes to their objectives of keeping the spirit of old buildings alive, all the while breathing new life into them by giving them new meaning.
Projects such as i-Zone which was a former Coca-Cola Bottling Plant in Toronto that now serves as a 104 unit live-work and artist studios, as well as Garment Factory Lofts that saw the old Dylex building in Toronto transform into 153 award winning lofts should have Peterborough residents excited about what the future holds for the former YMCA.
For many people, and a lot of current “Y” members, the old building was a significant one. It helped anchor the George St North portion of Downtown Peterborough along with The Armoury, City Hall, and PCVS. It stood as a pillar of strength and welcomed generations of families into its friendly confines to swim, workout, take part in sports, and in general gave people a sense of belonging.
While the new YMCA has continued on with these traditions, the old residence seemingly sat dormant and much of the feeling in the area was all but lost. It is now the goal of Atria Development to hit the reset button on this classic downtown Peterborough building that still holds significant sentimental value to many people and bring new life to it!
Here are the plans for the building:
-> With the preservation of the façade, the new build is designed to complement the existing façade with a mix of glass and brick
-> Y Lofts will feature chic modern designed suites, a view to a central courtyard, rooftop terrace and gym
-> Implement several green initiatives: *Implement a recycling program *Use LED lighting *Install bike racks and a collection of electric vehicle charging stations *Create a green roof space *Include custom climate control heating/cooling systems, energy efficient glazing, energy star rated appliances *Use energy efficient plumbing and lighting fixtures
While all of this is happening, they plan on preserving a lot as well—including the early Romanesque façade where possible facing George and Murray, and the concrete structural elements of the later additions, which will be reused so as not to waste resources.
Over its 120 years in existence, numerous additions took place such as the entrances, the tower and 19th century brick façade, which will all be restored as well. Atria will also utilize the concrete and steel structures of later phases, both for environmental and economic reasons.
Excited yet? We are! As 2018 takes shape so will the Y Lofts, which will once again bring the intersection to prominence and further add to our bustling downtown core.
For more information on Y Lofts and Atria Development, find them here: