Toronto – The first commercial building in the burgeoning Vaughan Metropolitan Centre has won Office Development of the Year Award for the Greater Toronto Area. The Commercial Real Estate Development Association Greater Toronto Chapter (NAIOP) acknowledged the KPMG Tower, designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects, and SmartREIT and Mitchell Goldhar, developers.
This LEED Gold-registered 365,000-square-foot office tower is the first completed building of the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre (VMC) master plan developed and designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects. The building includes a large retail pavilion and has direct underground connection to the TTC subway station, which opens in December 2017.
“The KPMG Tower illustrates the architectural quality and urban design excellence that will emerge in this smart, pedestrian-friendly precinct and be an exemplar for transforming low-rise development into dynamic urban infrastructure,” said Donald Schmitt, Principal, Diamond Schmitt Architects.
“From a field of high caliber entrants, we are grateful to the NAIOP Greater Toronto Chapter for acknowledging the KPMG Tower,” said Mitchell Goldhar, Chairman of the SmartREIT Board and Owner of Penguin Properties Inc. “This recognition is testament to a team comprised of government, transit and the private sector to create a master plan around visionary transportation infrastructure, resulting in the birth of a new, viable, sustainable city centre north, of which the KPMG Tower is the first of many class A office buildings to come.”
The City of Vaughan projects VMC will house 25,000 people and create 11,000 jobs, making this the largest urban development underway in North America.
“The unifying feature of the master plan is a 9-acre central park anchored by the KPMG Tower, which is also adjacent to two other Diamond Schmitt-designed projects – a mixed-use building to include a YMCA and public library, and SmartCentres Place Bus Terminal, an inter-regional transportation hub,” said Mike Szabo, Principal, Diamond Schmitt Architects.
The NAIOP states the criteria for the REX Awards focus on results (quality and performance), skills (teamwork, collaboration, innovation and creativity) and values (community and environmental awareness.)
Diamond Schmitt Architects (www.dsai.ca) is based in Toronto. Informed by urbanism, driven by design, the firm’s extensive portfolio includes performing arts centres, residential and commercial buildings, research and academic facilities. Current projects include the design for David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City; the restoration of Ottawa’s heritage Government Conference Centre to include the interim home of the Canadian Senate; the transformation of the National Arts Centre in Ottawa; and the new campus for Emily Carr University of Art + Design in Vancouver.