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Revitalizing a 1950s-era Commercial Building into a 21st Century Research and Medical Facility

Women’s College Health Research / Base Building Upgrades, Fit Outs, and Renovations

photo of 790 Bay entrance
  • Sector

    Health & Wellness

  • Location

    Toronto, Ontario

  • Client

    Women’s College Health Research

  • Size

    210,000 sf / 19,500 sm

In 2014, Architecture Counsel was selected by Women’s College Health Research (WCHR) to act as the base building architect for the 790 Bay Street building which, at 210,000 square feet, is Canada’s largest medical building. The building was originally designed by celebrated Toronto Architect, Peter Dickinson, and served as the headquarters for the Continental Can Company before WCHR acquired the building.

From 2014 through to the present day, ACi has performed complex base building upgrades focused on bringing its aging infrastructure to current standards of user experience, accessibility requirements, and energy use. The building hosts a variety of tenants who share the common areas and are impacted by any renovations. Managing the multi-faceted stakeholders – from the WCHR Board, facilities staff, other base building consultants, and diverse tenants – provides a rich assortment of tasks that requires continual coordination and creativity to ensure all needs are addressed. All interventions were conducted while the building remained fully occupied.

Projects to date include:

HQ Toronto Health Hub

Twelve health clinics were constructed between 2014-2019, offering office and office support spaces, welcome desk and waiting area, exam rooms, staff, and clinic support spaces

A new mechanical penthouse erected on top of the existing mechanical penthouse, 2020

Common spaces accessibility and WC upgrades, 2017

Corridor and core upgrades, 2015, 2016, 2017