Design details revealed for Gehry’s Forma project
Details for Frank Gehry’s newest mixed-use development, Forma, have been unveiled by developers Great Gulf Group, Dream, and Westdale Properties.
The new designs for the 73-storey east tower includes an appointed Gehry-designed lobby along with a custom art installation that reflects his visionary approach.The building marks the Toronto-born designer’s first residential tower in Canada: “I’m a Toronto traditionalist, because I remember Osgoode Hall, University Avenue, the Parliament Buildings, and the Royal York Hotel. There is a feeling of Toronto that I had as a kid, and I wanted that to be in the DNA of our design,” says Frank Gehry, Gehry Partners LLP. “Every city in the world has its own light and the light is modified by the buildings in the city. I wanted this building to capture the essence of Toronto. It’s not like everywhere else. The light is different. The heritage is different. It’s a different place. I hope that is what people see when they look up.”
The material palette of the east tower lobby offers a counterpoint to the stainless steel of the tower with curved wood furniture and accents, along with limestone cladding the walls and flooring. The ceiling is dominated by a sculptural installation designed by Gehry’s design team, offering a shimmering motif of maple leaves that can be viewed from the street.
Drawing on the vocabulary of the façade, alternating stainless steel and glass canopies wrap the corners of both towers at street level, giving coverage to future potential commercial tenants and maximizing the public realm with active street frontage.
Remaining interior spaces were helmed by Studio Paolo Ferrari, who built on Gehry’s initial inspiration, delivering designs that served as a metaphor for the city. Forma marks Ferrari’s first condominium residence design in his studio’s hometown of Toronto.
Ferrari’s designed amenity spaces that are grouped by theme and strategically located throughout the tower. Separating the amenities in this way allowed the design to focus on the actual uses of each space, providing spaces that are more intimate and accessible.
Hospitality and entertainment amenities are grouped in the Grand Suite on the 73rd floor, taking advantage of views. Conceived as a generous extension of the building’s residences, the Grand Suite features a chef’s kitchen, interconnected entertainment rooms and an intimate theatre intended for smaller groups of ten or twelve.
The Creator’s Club focuses on moments of inspiration and creativity, featuring a multi-functional co-working space, which shifts from private and semi-private spaces to more open areas for working and collaboration. An adjoining Maker’s Studio offers space for hands-on tasks, crafts, and hobbies, while the soundproof recording studio allows content creators to record podcasts, or work on social media videos and other creations.
The Health and Wellness Retreat balances the amenity offering, with a focus on the duality of restoration and high energy. Grounded in mind, body, and wellness, Forma features a spa, a jacuzzi with warm grey stone, and a sauna, which complements a warm, lively fitness studio complete with the latest equipment, including a dedicated spin room.
“Our intention was to craft purposeful spaces that oscillate between social and serene. Toronto is an unrelenting, energetic city that, at the same time, also has incredible connections to the lake and nature. We wanted to capture a balance between the exuberance and the restorative,” says Paolo Ferrari, founder of Studio Paolo Ferrari. “It’s been incredible to collaborate with Gehry on this vision– he is an incredible ambassador for creativity and inventiveness. We saw first-hand how Gehry and the entire team were genuinely passionate about this work and found a natural alignment from the very beginning.”
“In many ways, Forma is a celebration of Toronto, marking the exciting homecoming of top international talent back to this wonderful and beautiful city. Frank and Paolo are among the top visionaries in their respective fields, and we are honoured to work alongside their teams to create a beautiful landmark that will become an architectural hallmark on the world stage,” says Mitchell Cohen, Chief Operating Officer of Westdale Properties.