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Toronto Catholic District School Board

O’Connor House Wins Heritage Toronto Award

The Toronto Catholic District School Board and the O’Connor Irish Heritage House Committee were presented with an Award of Merit by Heritage Toronto for the transformative restoration and re-purposing of the O’Connor Estate Buildings.
The award was announced at the 40th Annual Heritage Toronto Awards ceremony on Tuesday, October 21 at The Royal Conservatory of Music.
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The estate consists of three buildings: the O’Connor house, coach house and a maintenance building, comprising approximately 10,000 sq. ft.  The estate buildings were restored to heritage standards and serve as a modern-day community hub for educational, cultural and heritage activities. These three buildings are arranged around a landscaped courtyard at 50 Rowena Drive, near the main entrance to Senator O’Connor College High School.
The Senator O’Connor Estate, known as Maryvale Farm, was constructed in 1933 and is an attractive example of Colonial Revival architecture. There is beauty and balance in both the exterior design and the inner workings of the buildings. A magnificent asset of heritage architecture, the O’Connor House embodies the history of the Lawrence Avenue area of Toronto from the Don Valley Parkway to Victoria Park and highway 401.
Kearns Mancini Architects oversaw the project which was completed earlier this year.
“The Toronto Catholic District School Board appreciates the important role we play in the architectural history of Toronto,” says Trustee Angela Kennedy, who was a longstanding advocate for the project. “We are so pleased that our students will benefit from a restored repurposed transformed building which is part of Toronto's heritage.”
"The O'Connor House organization would like to thank the TCDSB, KMAI and the funding partners for their support and collaboration on the success of this Project," says Tony Wagner, Chair of the Board of Directors for O'Connor House.
“The O’Connor House project gave the TCDSB an opportunity to contribute to Toronto’s history,” says TCDSB Director of Education Angela Gauthier “Our students and staff benefit from the exposure to our unique history and the beautiful architecture in our City.”
“The 3 heritage buildings represent a wonderful tribute to Senator O’Connor and his generous legacy to his community and the cause of Education.  It was a honour and a pleasure to work on this fine project”.  Statement from Kearns Mancini Architects.
The restoration project, which was completed this year, was jointly funded through contributions from the Government Canada, the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the City of Toronto, the Toronto Catholic District School Board and the O’Connor House Organization.