Reserve Properties and Westdale Properties just announced an unprecedented collaboration with Pharrell Williams on a new two-tower, residential development at Yonge and Eglinton, the epi-centre of Toronto. Untitled is the culmination of a multi-faceted design process that saw the internationally acclaimed artist, musician and designer collaborate with an extended project team, including architects IBI Group and Interior Designers U31, to deliver a new vision for residential living. Marketing for the project launched at a press conference in Toronto’s Yonge-Dundas Square, with sales slated to begin in early 2020.
“It’s a tremendous honour to announce our collaboration with Pharrell Williams,” says Sheldon Fenton, President and Chief Executive Officer, Reserve Properties. “The partnership was born out of a desire to do something really unique for Toronto and architecture as a whole. We believe by bringing in a cultural icon with vision and ideation from outside the realm of real estate, it will allow us to break the mould in terms of what has traditionally been done. The experience has been off the charts and beyond our expectations.”
The Grammy award-winning artist, producer, songwriter, philanthropist, fashion designer and entrepreneur is known for high-profile collaborations, including a capsule collection with Chanel and a long-standing relationship with Adidas and Human Made. Other collaborative projects include an upcoming Youth Centre in Virginia Beach with Oppenheim Architecture + Design, work with Zaha Hadid Architects and the creation of the Something in the Water Festival. The collaboration with Reserve and Westdale marks Pharrell’s first foray into multi-residential development.
“The opportunity to apply my ideas and viewpoint to the new medium of physical structures has been amazing,” says Williams, detailing his involvement in the project. “Everyone at the table had a collective willingness to be open, to be pushed, to be prodded and poked, to get to that uncomfortable place of question mark, and to find out what was on the other side. The result is untitled and I’m very grateful and appreciative to have been a part of the process.”
A series of design meetings were held in New York, Los Angeles and London over the course of the past year to hone the vision for the project. During this time, key themes around essentialism, connections to the elements and the universality of space emerged to guide the overall direction of untitled. Pharrell worked alongside Reserve Properties, Westdale Properties, IBI Group and U31, responding to everything from the vision and materiality of the architectural facade, to the overall interior programming and even the furnishing choices for individual spaces.
“The thinking and philosophy that ended up governing the whole process was less about adding items and instead focusing on reducing and stripping away to get us to the essential core elements of the design,” explains Shane Fenton, Chief Operating Officer, Reserve Properties. “Pharrell pushed us towards designing spaces that felt universal. Instead of dictating a lifestyle onto our purchasers and residents, we aimed to create harmonious spaces that could serve as the backdrop to their lives. That lens was applied throughout the entire building until we ended up with something that felt both timeless and singular.”
The ethos of universality is also how the team landed on the brand untitled, which encapsulates the notion that physical space is only a backdrop.
“To live your life untitled means not having to live up to something or perform beyond a standard. For the standard to literally just be this beautiful matrix that allows people to create their own world,” explains Williams. “How could we as designers ensure the essentials were really thought out and expertly crafted, but delivered in a way that left everything else up to the imagination of the person occupying the space.”
Untitled is another joint-venture between Reserve Properties and Westdale Properties, following the sell-out success of Line 5. With untitled, the two leading Toronto-based developers are once again returning to mid-town with 750 units, split between two towers and a joint-podium.
“Yonge and Eglinton is in the midst of a tremendous transformation that is unlike anything else happening in North America,” says Mitchell Cohen, Chief Operating Officer, Westdale Properties. “We were one of the first to invest in the area and to see just how far midtown has come since then has been a highlight. As developers with a long track record in this neighbourhood, collaborating with Pharrell is about pushing ourselves to do better. But it’s also an opportunity to give back to a community that has given us so much.”
untitled will feature 750 units and will launch in early 2020. For more information, register at untitledtoronto.com