60 acres at Don Mills-Eglinton up for rezone

With a new underground LRT station at Don Mills Road and Eglinton Avenue East coming down the rails for 2020, electronics manufacturer Celestica has applied for a rezoning of its 60-acre site near that intersection.

The plans came to the City of Toronto’s staffers in early August and request a change from the current employment lands to a mixed-use zoning for both commercial and residential use.

Located at 844 Don Mills Rd. and 1150 Eglinton Ave. E., the proposal would retain some employment lands along Don Mills north from the intersection with Eglinton, with mixed-use covering the balance of the rest of the site. Initial concepts also include a hockey arena as a replacement for the Don Mills Civitan Arena.

The site first opened in the early 1950s as IBM’s manufacturing plant and remained in their use until they relocated to Markham in 1993 when IBM created Celestica to maintain electronic manufacturing at the original site.

The location is Celestica’s international head office, but with the decline of solar panel manufacturing on site, which Celestica says in its reports to Toronto City Council it is expected to cease in or around 2016, they hope to repurpose the lands.

“Celestica doesn’t need the site and are going great guns to sell it. Rezoning and the LRT there make it more attractive to a buyer,” said Coun. John Parker, who said he has already had several meetings with the owner.

“It’s currently employment lands, and they’re looking for mixed use, and that’s where the showdown could come from, from the city and local residents.

“The city is not fond of losing employment lands, but it could otherwise be an exciting development to see take shape, depending on how this plays out,” he added.

The plans submitted would allow for 2,897 dwelling units, about 77,000 square metres of office space and about 9,000 square metres of retail space. The mixed-use area also plans for eight high-rise towers ranging from 24 to 40 storeys with both above-and below-grade parking with 930 spots.

Representatives from the owner did not return requests for comment by press time. 

Article exclusive to TRNTO