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(June 30, 2010) A Toronto building slated for demolition should be declared a heritage site, say members of the North York Preservation Panel. Canada Post acquired the former home of Oxford University Press last year and are preparing to tear down the facility. The building was designed by an architectural firm responsible for buildings at University of Toronto, Lakehead University and Trent University was completed in 1964.
      Posted June 30, 2010 - 4:55 PM

The 70 Wynford site will become a parking lot for a new Canada Post centre and a neighbouring warehouse will be renovated into a mail centre.

Geoff Kettel, Chair of the North York Preservation Panel, said the building, was never put on the City of Toronto heritage listing, so nothing can be done to prevent demolition. But he’s hoping Canada Post will re-think their plans. 

“Wynford Park has a number of fine institutional buildings.  It’s a high quality institutional neighbourhood and replacing one of these buildings with a parking lot doesn’t make sense.” Kettel told the Town Crier. (mytowncrier.ca/former-oxford-university-press-building-to-be-razed.html)

He added, “This story is as much about urban design as about heritage. Canada Post is creating a large parking lot, immediately across the road from the Aga Khan's magnificent new gift to Toronto - the Aga Khan Centre and Ismail Cultural Centre, now under construction.   The approved design for this treasure in the making provides  that there will be NO above ground parking! In essence Canada Post chose the wrong building to demolish - they plan to destroy the one that creates Wynford's Modernist identity and its streetscape, and leave behind the  ‘anywhere’ warehouse!”

The building was designed by Fairfield and Dubois an eminent firm of archtitects very active in the 1960s. The Ontario Pavilion at Expo 67 was done by them. Robert Fairfield was the architect for the Stratford Festival Theatre, completed in 1957.

Photographs with this story are © by Bob Krawczyk at www.tobuilt.ca

      End of Posting
Sunday December 5, 2010
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