Egale Centre

LGBTQ Homeless Youth Transitional Housing

There is a clear and urgent need for a facility exclusively dedicated to homeless LGBTIQ2S youth in Toronto. Nearly one in four homeless youth identify as LGBTIQ2S and, facing homophobia at home, they lack the traditional social supports necessary for the transition from childhood to adulthood. Once on the street, these same youth report being afraid to access mainstream shelters and housing for fear of abuse. In response to these challenges, Egale Centre will be exclusively dedicated to homeless LGBTIQ2S youth.

Canada’s first and only facility (only the ninth in the world!) that will combine the proven counselling services of Egale Youth Outreach with emergency and transitional housing exclusively dedicated to serving homeless LGBTIQ2S (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex, queer, questioning and Two Spirit) youth. When its doors open, Egale Centre promises to fundamentally transform the support services offered to Toronto’s homeless youth population.

The facility will be an extensive renovation of two existing housing structures on the site - a historic home from the late 1800s, and an apartment built in 1978. SUSTAINABLE.TO’s mission is to preserve and improve these historic structures, and blend them into a new facility with exceptional energy efficiency and comfort.

New west-facing windows with vertical shading devices will create a visual identity that ties the existing structures together and shades the building from summertime sun. This is our effort to blend passive sustainable features with the architecture of the building and neighbourhood, combining beauty and function into one meaningful infusion. This ties together the old with the new, and creates an interface between inside and out.

Above-code amounts of insulation will be added to the inside of the existing masonry structures, preserving the exterior aesthetic and creating a very comfortable interior environment. This is created through pioneering construction techniques that allow a new, high-efficiency building to be constructed within the shell of an old one. This allows us to preserve resources during construction and operation, and preserve the social equity of the site.

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Toronto, ON
1670 m², 18,000 ft²
Project Architect:
Craig Race
Egale Canada Human Rights Trust
Interior Design:
Yabu Pushelberg
Daniels Corporation
Atkins + VanGroll
Mechanical & Electrical:
Mott MacDonald