By Emma Cubitt
The Region of Peel issued a request for prequalification to develop new supportive housing on the lot of a former auto repair shop along Lakeshore Boulevard in Port Credit in November of 2017.
After Indwell was awarded the contract, it was important to their team that they be very involved with the community throughout the development process by holding meetings to receive input from residents and working with the community to ensure its needs were met.
Indwell is an affordable housing developer that provides permanent supportive housing with a mission to create communities for people seeking health, wellness, and belonging. This is their first project in Mississauga, with a second project under construction in Streetsville. Construction began in November 2019 and wrapped up in early 2022, despite delays caused by the pandemic.
The four-storey 51,000 ft2 Lakeshore Lofts has become a new gateway on the east side of the Port Credit community along Lakeshore Boulevard. The building is mixed-use and is wholly designed for community-benefit purposes.
The building is shared with The Compass Food Bank & Outreach Centre. The synergies between the affordable housing development and food bank are significant, with 95% of tenants having already participated in The Compass programs, ranging from the food bank to financial coaching.
Supportive housing encompasses affordable and accessible residential accommodation that provide individual-based support and services so that residents can live independently.
This can include assistance with activities of daily living, medical care, or access to other community supports. Community-led projects like this one are made possible by meaningful partnerships with government and local agencies.
The 68-unit apartment complex (primarily composed of one bedroom units with six studios) includes amenity space for tenants on the first and fourth levels. The site is adjacent to a public transit stop and close to all civic amenities, enabling tenants to engage in the broader community without relying on automotive transportation.
The ground floor space is used for larger gatherings and activities while the top floor common room is for smaller groups and offers a view of Lake Ontario.
The furnishings were created by students from Sheridan College’s Bachelor of Craft and Design program in collaboration with Lakeshore Lofts tenants.
A significant feature of Lakeshore Lofts is the energy efficiency it provides, following the Passive House US (PHIUS+ 2018) standard, considered to be one of the most rigorous voluntary energy-based standards in the design and construction industry.
By following this standard, Indwell is reducing greenhouse gas emissions and lowering tenant utility costs. In fact, the entire building is powered by electricity, and there is no fossil fuel service connection.
The building design includes the following energy efficiency features:
The building has a high-efficiency roof-mounted ERV system, built in Winnipeg by Tempeff, which uses Dual-Core technology to recover heat while allowing for continuous fresh air supply and frost-free operation.
The façade design is inspired by the multi-faceted undulation of the waves on nearby Lake Ontario, and where the blue ombre ACM panelling was inspired by water, the interior uses biomimicry with maple plywood panelling to create a sense of warmth and place for the tenants. Each apartment has a unique entrance with a variation in blue paints and maple panels, creating a welcoming niche.
Animating the pedestrian experience is a large-scale public art installation celebrating Port Credit. The Mississauga Arts Council and Port Credit BIA held a design competition, with local artist David Anthony selected for this project. The three themes highlighted were the musical community, food culture, and Lake Ontario as central aspects of local identity. While the building itself is a flagship emblem of the possibility to create new housing solutions to address homelessness, including public art allows the building to broaden its social impacts even further.
ARCHITECT Invizij Architects Inc.
STRUCTURAL ENGINEER Kalos Engineering Inc.
CIVIL ENGINEER Counterpoint Engineering Inc.
MECHANICAL/ELECTRICAL ENGINEER CK Engineering Inc.
LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT OMC Landscape Architects Inc.
ENERGY EFFICIENCY CONSULTANT ZON Engineering Inc.
GENERAL CONTRACTOR SCHILTHIUS Group of Companies
PHOTOS Industryous Photography