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Photos: James Bombales

Located at 400 Park Avenue, in downtown Newmarket, King George School Lofts & Town Homes by The Rose Corporation is preparing its sales centre and model suite for a grand opening fall launch. But before the sales office opens to the public, BuzzBuzzNews travelled to Newmarket for an exclusive sneak peek at the space.

Through its 35-year history as a real estate developer and asset management firm, The Rose Corporation has made a commitment to the preservation and respect for heritage properties. The boutique developer was previously involved in other heritage conversions including The Toy Factory Lofts, The Merchandise Building in downtown Toronto and The Tannery District in Kitchener. The company’s latest development brings it to historic downtown Newmarket at the site of a former public school.

King George School Lofts & Town Homes isn’t your typical condominium project. There are no high-rise towers, crowded amenities or multi-level parking garages here. Instead, the development centres around a century-old red-brick building designed by architect O.E. Trench in 1912. The historic two-storey structure served as King George School until 1993 but has since been used for a variety of educational purposes making it Newmarket’s oldest public learning institution.

With the help of renowned architecture and interior design firm, AUDAX Architecture, The Rose Corporation is set to transform the iconic building into a heritage-rich loft conversion. The exterior of the building will maintain its classic architecture which was commonly found on public schools built in the early 20th century. Its red brick facade, concrete quoins and ornamental projections will be restored, giving it new life as a residential building.

“We essentially wanted to keep the school as-is from the outside and maintain its historic facade and character,” says Daniel Berholz, President of The Rose Corporation. “The only change we’re making on the outside is we’re putting in a new elevator core, replacing the existing stair fire escape, in order to make the building completely accessible.”

The interior of the building will be converted into 11 lofts ranging in size from 640 square feet to 1,250 square feet. Homeowners and visitors will be greeted with dramatic 13-foot ceiling heights and expansive windows, while some units feature exposed 100-year- old brick for even more character. Standard finishes include wide plank hardwood floors, high efficiency windows, stone and marble countertops and a stainless steel appliance package.

“When working with a heritage property like this, there’s always the challenge of dividing the space into units and ensuring that it becomes a great place to live with modern conveniences,” says Andrew Webster, Vice President of Development at The Rose Corporation. “But there’s also the challenge of maintaining the historical character of the building but complementing it with a modern aesthetic with luxurious finishes, and blending the two together in a way that works.”

Surrounding the building will be 14 new two-storey freehold townhomes measuring around 2,100 square feet with two- or three-bedroom layouts. The Botsford Collection incorporates a contemporary interpretation of Edwardian architecture with gables, large box-style windows and an elegant brick facade. Only six homes will be available with each featuring contemporary features and finishes including soaring 10-foot ceilings, gourmet kitchens with quartz countertops, two-car garages and outdoor living areas complete with barbecue hook-ups.

Situated on the Northeast corner of the site, the Church Collection are eight Victorian-inspired townhomes designed to complement the existing homes along Church Street. The exteriors are characterized with oversized floor-to- ceiling windows framed in dark metal which contrasts nicely with the premium clay brick facade. Inside, the spacious living areas boast 10 foot ceilings, two-sided fireplaces, gourmet kitchens with Caesarstone countertops and luxurious bathrooms with optional heated floors. The suites also offer two car garages and plenty of outdoor living areas.

Residents of King George School Lofts & Town Homes will benefit from a prime location just steps from downtown Newmarket and its historic Main Street strip packed with shops, cafes and restaurants. The area is also ideal for Toronto-bound commuters with easy access to the Newmarket GO Station, YRT/VIVA bus service and highways 400 and 404.

To learn more about King George School Lofts & Town Homes, be sure to register online for the latest updates including the official grand opening.

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