Reintroducing our laneway suites

Back in March I wrote a blog post called “Laneway homes are the new loft.” And I did it because of my own personal interest (or obsession) with laneway housing. But what we ended up discovering was that I wasn’t the only one interested in this new housing type. In fact, that initial post ended up being, by far, our most popular since it went up in early March.


This got us thinking that, maybe, we haven’t been doing a good enough job explaining our own laneway suites. So we prepared a package explaining what we’re currently building at DUKE in the Junction and, today, we’d like to share that package with you. At the same time, I’d like to talk a little bit about what makes them unique. Here in the office, we love talking about our laneway suites and so I hope that you’ll find this discussion interesting as well.

But first let me address one of the comments I received on my last laneway post:

Laneway comment.JPG

My response was that, yes, he’s right. Building a standalone laneway home in the City of Toronto is almost impossible. I’ve tried, it’s hard. In the case of DUKE, we’re lucky that we’re able to incorporate them into a larger development–because that makes them possible. But I still think that our homes have the characteristics of laneway housing. Certainly, it’s a step in the right direction towards changing the city’s attitudes around this type of housing.

First, all of the homes are 2 storeys and designated as live/work. They have an entrance directly off of the laneway (to the south of Dundas Street West), as well as through the condominium building itself (see our plans here). What’s unique about this setup, is that each home can be easily configured to cleanly divide the living and working functions. With the addition of one door near the condominium entrance, the ground floor space is able to function as a standalone entity with its entrance located along the laneway.

On top of this, each laneway home has been designed to accommodate exterior signage. This obviously ties into the work use associated with these laneway homes, but we also think it’ll create a wonderful urban feel within the laneway. Ultimately, we see these homes as being a great fit for anybody ranging from a photographer to an accountant. It’s a way to “hang your shingle” on a quiet laneway in the Junction, but also get a wonderful living space for yourself.

Call me a biased laneway lover, but I really like these homes. And I hope you do too. If you have any questions or would like to call us a bunch of cheaters, we’d love to hear from you in the comment section below.

For more information on DUKE and these laneway units, visit junctionlife.ca.