Y Brookfield Multiplex Construction Canada Limited v 21 Avenue Road Building Group Inc.
Superior Court of Justice—Ontario
Before: Justice S.F. Dunphy
Date: 12 May 2016
"Modern urban construction has become
an increasingly complex affair. The modern construction manager must
act as conductor of an orchestra comprised of temperamental musicians
continually arriving and leaving the stage while the composer re-writes
the score. Whether music or cacophony emerges is the question. The gap
separating skilled artist from pedestrian journeyman is the difference
between symphony and cacophony.
The defendants turned to the
plaintiff to act as their construction manager for the conversion of
the former Four Seasons hotel site into a condominium. The
planned 22-month project had stretched into 44 months before smoldering
complaints broke out into litigation and a parting of the ways. Each
side blames the other for the delays. I have been designated case
management judge to help guide the parties through the litigation
process to the point where the issues can be resolved. Our journey is
So begins this ruling on what most likely be a lawsuit that will take longer than the construction.
The old Four Seasons site, at the corners of Avenue Road, Cumberland
Street and Yorkville Avenue, was turned into three separate condo
towers with shared facilities. A retail and residential condo was built
on the northwest corner by renovating the old hotel tower. A new office
condominium tower is being built on Yorkville Avenue while a taller new
condo tower is being built on the corner of Avenue Road and Cumberland
This quarrel is between Brookfield, the builder, and Camrost Felcorp,
the developer. It involves their relationship during the demolition of
the hotel and the renovations of Yorkville Plaza, the developer's name
for this condo tower.
What should concern purchasers of pre-construction condo units is the
time it took for this building to be completed. A promised 22 months
took over twice that long. Then the residents that moved in lived in a
construction site during the Interim Occupancy period for far too long.
Such delays can happen, especially
with a condo conversion.