TORONTO — An apartment briefly occupied by Ernest Hemingway at the end of his tenure in Toronto went up for sale Tuesday, putting a spotlight on the writer’s somewhat rocky relationship with Canada.
The American novelist lived in the two-bedroom unit in the midtown building — which now carries his name — for about six months between 1923 and 1924 when he was working as a journalist for the Toronto Star, said Kaitlin Wainwright, the director of programming for Heritage Toronto.
“He came back to Toronto in 1923 and he almost immediately regretted it,” she said, noting that for Hemingway, the city didn’t measure up to Paris, where he had been acting as the Star’s foreign correspondent.
“He really struggled with kind of the Protestantism and the ‘Toronto the Good’ mentality.”
Wainwright said Hemingway saw the city — to which he first moved in 1920 — as a “provincial backwater,” which perhaps wasn’t too far off the mark. In the 1920s, Toronto was not yet the bustling metropolis it would become.
“You can kind track through his time not only in Toronto, but in the early 1920s as he’s moving around to other cities working for the Star, the evolution of his writing,” Wainwright said, noting that when Hemmingway started working for the Toronto paper he was paid less than a penny per word, leading to a more verbose writing style.
“Obviously Hemingway the novelist is really known for a very minimalist use of language, a very sparse use of language,” she said. “But when you go back and read some of his earlier works, it’s like, what? This is not the Hemingway that we knew.”
His time in the apartment on Bathurst Street was also an important period for Hemingway and his wife; she was expecting her first child, said Wainwright.
Of Torontonians, he wrote, “we’ve come to the right place to have a baby, because that is the specialite de ville — the speciality of the city. They don’t do anything else.'”
Wainwright said the midtown neighbourhood where the apartment is located is also noteworthy, because it also acted as an incubator for other notable Torontonians.
“The number of luminaries in Toronto arts and culture who lived there in the middle part of the 20th century is really striking to me,” she said, listing literary critic Northrop Frye and musician Glenn Gould as residents.
Listing agent Andrew Harrild of Condos.ca said the Hemmingway unit offers buyers a chance to own 102 square metres (1,100 square feet) of literary history.
“You get a nice feeling when you walk into the place,” he said. “An eerie sense of history.”
Harrild said it’s long been known that Hemingway lived in the building, but it wasn’t until about five years ago that scholars discovered he had rented out Unit 19 specifically. An American found his year-long lease — signed in October 1923 and broken early so he could leave the city — that specified his unit and his rent: $85 per month.
Now, the unit is listed for $730,000 with monthly condo fees of $911.
Nicole Thompson, The Canadian Press
Vision for downtown Capstone neighbourhood beginning to come together.
From the City of Red Deer
Capstone redevelopment achieves new milestone with first major land sale
The transformation of Capstone has taken a significant leap forward with the announcement of the first sale of land, triggering approximately $36 million of multi-family residential development.
The City of Red Deer announced that Calgary’s Brad Remington Homes will deliver approximately 180 new condominium homes to the community. The deal represents the first investment of private equity into the Capstone community, and sets the stage for additional interest from both commercial and residential developers.
“This is a turning point in our city history, which will prove to be transformative as a former industrial area transitions into a modern, walkable urban community”, said Mayor Tara Veer. “Capstone is a city-defining project and represents the next generation of living, working and recreating in our city, and prioritizes our downtown through densification and sustainable community design. Most importantly, this significant private investment in Red Deer demonstrates confidence in our local marketplace and vision for downtown revitalization.”
Earlier this year, The City initiated a direct marketing program to identify developers with the financial strength, brand reputation and expertise in multi-family community development to help deliver the vision for Capstone.
“Developer selection is a critical step in a redevelopment program of this magnitude, and so our outreach was intentionally broad”, said Allan Seabrooke, City Manager. “We developed specialized tools, conducted site tours and shared information with capable developers from across the province and the country, in an effort to find the right partner to help us deliver on our vision for this community.”
Brad Remington Homes, headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, has delivered over 3,500 homes in southern Alberta, and is known for its construction expertise and philosophy around home ownership.
“Our mission has always been to provide the highest quality home possible, while remaining affordable”, noted Brad Remington President and CEO. “I am impressed by The City’s vision for Capstone and believe that many Red Deerians will aspire to live in this riverside community. We’re thrilled about the opportunity to redefine a whole new neighbourhood, and revitalize downtown,” he added.
The vision of Capstone started in 2009 with the relocation of The City’s Civic Yards, which opened up the area to development. Since then, The City has been investing in the foundation for future growth, focusing on upgrading utilities and services in the area, building a Riverwalk pathway, road improvements, landscaping, increased parking and reimagined gathering spaces.
Capstone is on its way to becoming a vibrant, mixed-use community. The master plan vision, developed by urban strategists GEHL Studios, outlines character areas like the “Green Spine” and “Riverwalk“, which are intended to easily connect pedestrian and bicycle commuters to the Red Deer River valley and to the downtown core. With over three million square feet of residential opportunity, Capstone will be home to over 5,000 new residents when complete. Combined with an additional two million square feet of commercial and retail opportunity, the community represents a billion dollar real estate program.
Simultaneous to the land sale announcement, The City unveiled the highly anticipated 3D visualization of Capstone, giving Red Deerians and Albertans the first glimpse of what the community will look like in 2040 at full build-out.
“The release of the 3D visualization, and the sale of development parcels marks a significant milestone in the Capstone rejuvenation project and is a result of years of preparatory work and infrastructure improvements showing our commitment to the vision,” commented Tara Lodewyk, General Manager, Development and Protective Services.
Consumer Research conducted earlier this spring indicates that the future resident of the community – dubbed the ‘Cap Citizen’ – seeks to be connected to nature, while having the services and offerings of downtown Red Deer on their doorstep. Capstone is designed to be a prime riverfront address, an accessible city home, and a leisure destination for all Red Deerians.
For more information about Capstone or to view the 3D animation visit the website at liveincapstone.ca.
Investment in high profile downtown property should boost downtown
From Cam Tomalty of RE/MAX Commercial Properties
POSTIVE NEWS FOR DOWNTOWN RED DEER
Downtown Office Building Sold
Some good news for Red Deer’s downtown core. The former Abacus Datagraphics Building, located at 4814 Ross Street, has sold to a local investor. The purchaser is excited about this new venture and will be making some upgrades to the building in hopes of attracting new tenants. The four-story building overlooks beautiful City Hall Park and is anchored by IDA Drugs. There are currently two new tenants undertaking tenant improvements with the hopes of occupancy in September. Sunreal Property Management Company has been retained to professionally manage the property and will be handling the day to day operations. The new owner plans to work attracting new tenants to the building and is offering Naming Rights to a qualified tenant.
“This is a positive sale for our downtown”, states Cam Tomalty of RE/MAX Commercial Properties. “We have seen many businesses close or relocate from the downtown core, so it is promising to see an investor willing to commit to the purchase, put money into renovations, and work at attracting new businesses to help revive the downtown core. In addition to the Abacus sale, over the past few months RE/MAX has been successful in selling the historic Prairie Office Products building and the Old Mill. Both locations are opening new businesses, which is more positive news for Downtown. As of last week, the former Roger’s Insurance building was sold as well, filling up a downtown office building that has been sitting vacant. We are hopeful this is a sign our economy is improving and is encouraging news for our City’s downtown”.
If you would like more information, please call Cam Tomalty at 403.986.777 or email him at [email protected]
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