Owners At This Urban Agriculture-Focused Condo Can Grow Their Own Grub
Ottawa’s Windmill Developments has partnered with Curated Properties on The Plant, an urban agriculture-oriented mixed-use project with a greenhouse-kitchen and in-suite aeroponic planter towers and herb gardens.
A redevelopment of the Dufflet Pastries site at Dovercourt Road and Sudbury Street, The Plant will be 10 storeys, with 10K SF of ground-floor retail and 10K SF of office on the second level.
It is the third project on Dovercourt for Curated; the Toronto developer previously built Cabin and 455 Dovercourt. The Plant is designed in accordance with One Planet Living principles, which Windmill CEO Jonathan Westeinde said is the same framework guiding Zibi, his company’s major mixed-use project in Ottawa.
“It’s all about using the ecological footprint of one planet, versus the average Canadian, who uses five planets.”
Curated partner Adam Ochshorn said The Plant — inspired by Milan’s Bosco Verticale (vertical forest) — will be oriented entirely around enabling residents to grow their own herbs and vegetables, making the project a good fit with Queen West's foodie culture.
Food-focused amenities include an internal greenhouse for cultivating seeds and starting plants adjacent to the building’s communal industrial kitchen.
Each suite will have micro-garden beds for fresh herbs built into kitchen counters. And owners can purchase a vertical LED-lit aeroponic planter tower, enabling cultivation indoors or outdoors.
Westeinde said The Plant also will be powered by a carbon-neutral district energy system, including geothermal heating/cooling. (All of Windmill's mixed-use projects are LEED Platinum.)
The company's Toronto-based partner, Alex Spiegel — who developed Union Lofts — had a connection with Dufflet Pastries owner Dufflet Rosenberg, and assisted with the site’s rezoning several years back.
As the area matured, the property’s redevelopment potential became clear, so Windmill bought it from the bakery owner and brought boutique builder Curated on board.
“We’re a good mix from a brand point of view,” Westeinde said.
Suites at The Plant are wide and shallow, helping maximize sun exposure. All 78 units will have a terrace or balcony, with ample room for plants. And the triangular balcony shape will enable more light to filter to floors below, facilitating plant growth and terrace-to-table food production.
Amid skyrocketing GTA detached-house prices, more families and first-time buyers are turning to condos.
“We want to give owners the ability to still have agriculture be part of their home,” Ochshorn said. “Plants make you feel good. When they grow, hopefully you grow."