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Real Estate


What the city is doing to prevent crappy condo balconies from shattering

(Image: Neil Ta from the Flickr group)

The city wants to be more proactive about all the glass-falling-from-the-sky mishaps like this, this and those eleven other incidents from the past year, but doing so is trickier than it sounds (actually, Toronto Life’s cover story this month looks into this very issue). Under Ontario’s building code, the city can’t force precautionary inspections of glass balconies—developers don’t have to agree to assessments until after the balconies have shattered. Still, the city is optimistically planning a database of all the condos with glass balconies built in the last five years, and will ask developers to make voluntary inspections. Ontario is also reviewing an unreleased city report that recommends stricter rules about the type of glass that can be used, though the problem with that is, even if those recommendations are adopted, the code doesn’t force developers to upgrade existing buildings to meet new regulations. Meaning the potential revamp could fix up the new towers of the future, but won’t apply to the buildings already up and shedding glass. [Toronto Star]