A black and white image of a four-story brick and stone building with numerous tall windows. On the left of the building is written Loblaw Groceteria Co. Ltd. in white letters.

Loblaws Groceteria Restoration Expansion

Loblaws Groceteria

A black and white image of a four-story brick and stone building with numerous tall windows. On the left of the building is written Loblaw Groceteria Co. Ltd. in white letters.

Southwest view of the Loblaw Groceteria Co. Ltd. building, Lake Shore Blvd W., 1940s. Courtesy of the City of Toronto Archives.

Photograph of the front of a brown brick building. It is covered in rectangular windows. Midway up the building is a white sign that reads "LOBLAW GROCETERIAS". Just above street level are signs for "Loblaws" "Shoppers Drugmart" and "Joe Fresh". On the sidewalk is a person and large dog. A white car is on the road in the far right corner.

Loblaw Groceteria West Block, 2021 Heritage Toronto Award Build Heritage Nominee. Image: Ben Rahn.

Photograph of the corner of a large building. The bottom half of the building is brown brick and the top is glass and lit up by lights. On the left side of the building on the brick is white text that reads "Loblaw Groceterias CO Limited". On the front facing side of the building is a sign that reads "Loblaws". On street level are entrances to stores "Joe Fresh" "Shoppers Drugmart". On the street is a blurred streetcar passing slightly into frame. The sun is setting.

Loblaws Groceterias West Block, 2021 Heritage Toronto Award Build Heritage Nominee. Image: Ben Rahn.

Restoration and Expansion

The restoration and expansion of the former Loblaws Groceteria building has preserved a remarkable example of Toronto’s waterfront industrial heritage, while introducing healthy food options, local retail and community services into a neighbourhood that is experiencing rapid residential growth. The project respects the warehouse’s history while making a confident statement about its readiness for another century of use. 

The Loblaws Groceteria Company building was the first substantial building at 500 Lake Shore Boulevard West, originally the Queen’s Wharf before being reclaimed as part of the Toronto Harbour Commission’s waterfront development plan. The warehouse, perched on the south edge of a site bisected by the Gardiner Expressway, sat vacant for 10 years – unviable as a commercial property due to its small footprint, lack of services and general deterioration.

Today, the site has been reborn as a 11,530 sm centre for food, retail, local services and employment for the Fort York neighbourhood. A four-storey 14,852sm Class AAA commercial ‘pavilion’ sits lightly atop the 1928 structure, clad in glass and steel brises soleil and set back from existing exterior walls to allow a clear reading of historic and new-build elements. The renovated and expanded warehouse is fully accessible, and certified LEED Gold.

Project Partners

Property Owner: 500 LS Limited

Heritage Architect: ERA Architects

Architect: Architects-Alliance

Heritage Craftperson/Consultant: Historic Restoration Inc.

Structural Engineer: RJC Engineers

Mechanical & Electrical Engineers: MCW Consultants

Sustainable Design and LEED: MCW Consultants

Landscape Architect: NAK Design Strategies