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Real Estate


QUOTED: Condo mogul Brad Lamb thinks Toronto will soon be exactly like New York

(Image: Sakeeb Sabakka)

If you want to live in central Toronto, you’re going to have to live in a condo. Families will be forced to buy into high-density living. It’s the natural evolution of a city.

—Condo broker and developer Brad Lamb, on what he calls the inevitable “Manhattanization” of Toronto. Lamb says steep prices and a dwindling supply of houses will soon push Mom, Dad and Junior away from backyards and driveways and into condoland—a belief shared by several other big names in the Toronto real estate world. Prices for single detached homes and townhomes are projected to rise 30 to 50 per cent in the next decade, making condos (which are actually shrinking in size) the only option for many families looking to nest within the city. We imagine this news will only make the current bidding wars for houses even more bloodthirsty. [CBC News]

  • el tuna

    Quoted: Everyone saying Brad Lamb is full of shit. I can’t imagine he has any bias at all.

  • ks

    um what’s wrong with living in apartments/condos? walk everywhere, no shovelling/gardening. You don’t see any fat/obese people in NYC because they walk everywhere. Sounds pretty perfect to me.

  • O

    You don’t see ‘any’ fat or obese people in NYC?!?
    Ridiculous. Harlem, Bronx.. Even manhattan, LOTS of obese, crap and fast food reign.

  • HungryAlways

    “…Toronto will soon be exactly like New York.”

    Except without anywhere near the number or quality of cultural options, calibre of restaurants, architectural history, views…

  • John Saunders

    Except without the crime, rudeness, racist cabbies and poverty

  • ks

    Dear O, I was in NYC for 5 days and didn’t see a single obese person walking the streets. Harlem wasn’t on my list of sights but I did take in a Yankees game in the Bronx.

  • Sophon Chou

    Yes, that’s all we need is to have more foreign investors buying up all of the condos, jacking up the rent, and having an endless sea of glass and metal. Toronto tries so hard to be NYC, but the difference is that NYC, has so much more character, architecture, history, and a preservation society that actually has more pull than the developers.
    Sure living in the city has its perks; I for one ride my bike everyday to work…yes, even in the winter. But the issue here is not about how obese people are; it’s the fact that there will be no more affordable housing downtown anymore. Wake up people, the champagne and caviar dreams are not affordable to everyone who lives and works downtown.

  • Steve R

    There are plenty of great restaurants in Toronto. 3rd best city in North America.

  • opl

    Toronto isn’t trying hard to be New York. Because it’s inevitable that as our great city grows that it would evolve to be more like New York. N.Y. is the penultimate city that all cities compare themselves against. Whether they get there or not is a moot point.

    In addition, please stop with the argument that N.Y. has more character, this or that, because we all know that. Also, stop arguing about affordable housing in the downtown core. Just like in N.Y., if you don’t like or can afford it, then move or live elsewhere.

  • Sophon Chou

    @opl: Why shouldn’t there be affordable housing in OUR downtown core? It’s not a matter of being able to afford it or getting my ass out of here. It’s a matter of greedy developers and investors coming in here and raising the prices on hard working stiffs…possibly like you and me. We are giving up half of our monthly salary JUST for rent and that’s just wrong!
    There are tons of hard working EDUCCATED families, who would love to be able to afford a home downtown, myself included. However, due to heavy student loans, or the fact that greedy people are raising the housing markets to astronomical heights in the city, they have to give up hours of their lives to commute back and forth to some place where they can ‘afford’. And really? Who can afford giving up 4 hours of their lives every day? Or the toll it takes on our environment with daily commuting, or the environmental problems associated with urban sprawl to our natural environment?

    In Montreal, you can find a huge flat for half of the price as compared to Toronto. Maybe if you take your silver spoon out of your mouth and realize that there might be a legitimate issue here, and stop telling people to just move…then maybe we can actually be a progressive city like NYC. Don’t get me wrong, I love T.O. but the way our city/country is moving, I’m sure Pierre Trudeau would be rolling over in his grave right now. Whatever happened to love thy neighbor? I guess in your case, if your neighbor isn’t keeping up with the Jones’ or the Kardashians, then who cares right?!?

  • Steve R

    Sophon – your rant made no sense. You basically just said that no one can live downtown because too many people live downtown. And no one can afford it, because developers are building too many units. Neither one of those makes much sense.

  • Betsey

    Chou: ‘EDUCCATED’ is spelled educated.

    If you compare Toronto to the great cities of the world there are actually very few with an abundance of single family or semi-detached homes in the core. That’s just how it is, and will always be. Suburban sprawl is not enviornmentally sound for many reasons and dense urban centers are what drive culture, entertainment and dining growth. Toronto may not have the architectural history that NYC or European cities have but we are forging our own path and there are many architecturally interesting buildings going up here. Compared to NYC, Paris, and many other cities the size of the average condo unit in Toronto is still fairly good. It is a very North American notion that we need to have tonnes of space to live in, no one needs a ‘huge flat’.

    The major downfall of Toronto is our pathetic public transportation system, particularly to the surrounding GTA areas. I believe that developers should pay a hefty fee (that is NOT passed onto the buyer) to help implement more/better public transit since they are the ones getting rich from bringing more people into the core.

  • Simon Hong

    Brad J Lamb is a wiener and knows nothing except selling douche condos to douche-y people. These are the facts

  • Sophon Chou

    @ Besey- OOPS! Bad spell check and a summer head cold, my bad…I guess one word out of a few paragraphs wasn’t bad? But really, how many architecturally interesting new condo buildings are there in Toronto? I’m sorry City place looks all shiny and new, but give me a Victorian building anyday.

    @ SteveR-I never said that no can live downtown because too many people live downtown. I’m just stating that the price to pay for a place downtown has gone through the roof, and there are less and less affordable housings like co-ops etc. available. The only thing people can do to now is to purchase in places like Whitby and commute 4 hours a day (nothing wrong in Whitby btw, just not my first choice to live out there). I know tones of people who would love to live downtown, but simply can’t afford it due to sky rocketing prices, which are being driven up by over sea investors. And the developers aren’t buying up the units; they are just increasing the price of the units to a ridiculous price range. $350k for 600sq feet? Really?

  • RC

    Listening to Brad Lamb is like taking advice from the devil himself. How can you trust anything this guys says?

  • za

    This scenario makes sense for alot of people. For example, I work and live downtown and my housing is less than 1/3 of my income (which is the golden rule right?)so there are people who can/choose to be down here without being squeezed or whatever. Maybe yuo could get a higher paying job if you want to live downtown and still do stuff.

  • Habermas

    Brad Lamb’s opinion? Has anyone heard of “conflict of interest”? The reality is that Toronto is not an island like Manhattan and plenty of land is still available in relative proximity to the downtown core. Toronto is benefitting from plenty of overseas investors looking for a stable economy but, once this influx of investment dries up, the condo craze will subside. Furthermore, Mr. Lamb’s condos are considered amongst the worst in quality compared with industry standards. Ask those who, after buying from Mr. Lamb, feel blessed to count on Tarion construction warranties.

  • Sue Kim

    it’s funny how some are on attack mode instead of actually reading and listening to the facts here. people make comparisons all of the time and this is actually a viable one. maybe listen to the experts on this one.