Leaside House

Toronto, Canada

This new 4-bedroom home addresses the needs of a family of five and their guests, while incorporating barrier-free design principles as well as a distinct aesthetic appeal.

The house is located in Toronto’s Leaside neighbourhood, surrounded by traditional brick bay-and-gable houses. The desire to subtly integrate the building into the existing streetscape resulted in the selection of traditional building materials such as brick and wood; the contemporary design was emphasized with distinctive grey zinc cladding used as an accent material.

Modern Toronto urban house with large floor-to-ceiling windows with Juliet balcony, walkout basement and airy and layout.
Modern kitchen with gable end marble island and counter with brass hanging light and accent tile backsplash

“Amanda and Ryan, a professional couple with three children, wanted a house that would be tough, but also graceful and nimble like an athlete.”

“In Leaside, An Exercise in Good Design”

Designlines Magazine

Living room with modern wall fireplace with black stone hearth, floor-to-ceiling windows, modern gray sofa, and cushioned wood chairs
Modern Toronto beautiful architect designed master bathroom. White tile, white bathtub, wooden windows. Interior design.

While planning for wheelchair access was a fundamental part of the design process, the creation of a comfortable family home was the ultimate goal. Efficient, clean design and simple, modern spaces are main features of this 3,200 square foot house. Generous entry hall extends into bright two-storey high dining room space while at the rear, the main living quarters continue seamlessly into the backyard with large window and door openings.

Double height dining room with large wood dining room table and Wegner Wishbone chairs. Toronto modern design. Designlines magazine.
Living room and dining room with views to wood clad entry. Modern Toronto architect sustainable house ground floor. Dining area. Design lines magazine.

“When you have a big, wide-open floor plate, you must ask yourself: ‘How do you create a sense of unfolding – a sense of surprise?’ To achieve this effect, [Altius] envisioned the front foyer as a sober antechamber that opens, dramatically, to the main house.”

“In Leaside, An Exercise in Good Design”

Designlines Magazine

Modern Canada Toronto bedroom. Architect design. Simple and beautiful.
Master bedroom trimless walls and wide plank oak flooring. Toronto architect Designlines magazine interior design.

Special attention was given to backyard area featuring spacious patio, large pool and spa. Particular attention was paid to natural daylight exposure at the basement walk-out, easing its transition to grade via terraced green wall. Shading is provided by deep roof overhangs and cantilevered volumes.

Canada Toronto architect basement renovation. Simple and modern.
Basement kitchen and dining room with modern german jointed harvest table and green accent wall. Toronto modern design. Basement renovation.
Rear yard of modern Toronto home with large cantilevered bedroom with a stone patio, large pool and integral hot tub.  Simple and elegant and modern. Designlines magazine.



  • Program and Spatial Optimization
  • Natural Ventilation and Passive Cooling
  • Natural Daylighting
  • High Performance Envelope Design
  • Renewable and/or Recyclable Materials and Finishes
  • Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) and Non-toxic Materials and Finishes
  • Radiant Heating
  • Heat Recovery Ventilation
  • Low Energy Lighting & Appliances (LED, CFL lighting and Energy Star appliances)
  • Water Conserving Appliances & Fixtures (low flow/ dual flush toilets)