Saturday, April 7, 2012

King and Bathurst/Then and Now

Originally built as the International Harvester Showroom, this classic example of Art Moderne or Streamline architecture has managed to survive by re inventing itself through the years.
In the 1980's it was home to Crangle's Collision. Photo by Patrick Cummins.
Even Google maps are now a historic record of the past. This capture from 2010 shows the Thompson Hotel under construction that incorporated the old showroom as their new 24 diner, Counter.

1980 or so by Patrick Cummins
Rick McGinnis was right and a little research found this postcard of a twin of sorts on Weston Road when it was a Lyon's Furniture store circa 1950.


  1. As you can see by the third and sixth photos, the front was actually torn down. The facade was not preserved -- it was recreated using different materials to mimic the original.

    The reason why Freed bothered to replicate the facade was in order to get a variance from the city for extra height for the hotel.

    The Crangles site was purchased for $13.2 million in 2006. "The property became more valuable than the business" was Les Crangle's comment.

  2. Good information. Probably the same situation with Bishop's Block.
    I can't imagine a developer actually marking every piece of a historic building, knocking it down and then re assembling it exactly.
    Besides, you're not allowed to use recycled materials (historic or otherwise) for structural construction.

  3. Same as the Windsor Arms Hotel, though very few people know that - it was leveled during condo construction and built as a replica, but it's not the same building.

    The "twin" on Weston by Rogers was opened just after WW2 as a department store - I don't remember the name. It was an optimistic time, and the owners obviously thought that Mount Dennis would be as lucrative a market as Weston or The Junction to the north and south. It didn't last long, and by the time I remember it, Silvano's (who later moved next door, and have just recently gone out of business) had moved their photofinishing business into the building.

  4. Wasn't it a monument (tomestone) store for a long time as well?

  5. The monument workshop was next door, or a couple of doors south. Not sure if it's still there today.