In early 2020, Contessa Developments nailed down their plans for a site at 5509 Dundas Street West. Those plans — to bring a 22-storey purpose-built rental building with 259 units to the site in Etobicoke — marked the third iteration of Contessa’s proposal since 2018, but it was the one that apparently stuck, getting the nod from City Council in February 2021.

But it seems that things have gone downhill since.

Last summer, receivership proceedings were initiated by Centurion Mortgage Capital Corporation against Dundas Shorncliffe Limited Partnership and Dundas Shorncliffe Ltd., which are the shell companies linked to the 5509 Dundas Street West site, as well as an abutting address municipally known as 5507 Dundas Street West.

Centurion alleged at the time that the debtors were owing some $17.5M related to the Dundas and Shorncliffe site, and as such, requested the Ontario courts to appoint a receiver over the company on August 4, 2023.

That request was not immediately obliged. In the months that followed, a receivership order was “held in abeyance” to allow the debtors the opportunity to refinance or sell the property, according to a statement of the receiver that was prepared more recently by public accounting, tax and advisory firm, BDO. The debtors were ultimately unable to secure a sale.

On March 26, 2024, a sworn affidavit of the Assistant Vice President of Mortgage Investments and Joint Ventures for Centurion, Bob Vavaroutsos, put the final nail in the coffin for the Dundas and Shorncliffe site. In the affidavit, Vavaroutsos confirms that the debtors had not repaid the $17.5M owing to Centurion by that time, effectively putting BDO's receivership order into effect.

Notably, the court documents reveal that in addition to the $17.5M owed to Centurion, the debtors also owed $5.43M to Pesciolino Holdings Inc. and $1.574M to Mapleview Pear Tree Inc. for a total debt load of $24.504M as of April 2, 2024.

Since taking over as receiver of 5507 and 5509 Dundas Street West, BDO has brought on Avison Young to market the property and (hopefully) broker a sale. It could be a decent development opportunity for an investor interested in tapping into the “rapidly intensifying” Etobicoke Centre ward.

The sales brochure from Avision Young reveals that the 0.83-acre site has zoning approvals in place to permit a 22-storey residential apartment building with up to 265 units and a total gross floor area of 242,187 sq. ft. It also highlights that the location benefits from an “extensive transit network” — including GO Transit, TTC, and MiWay, all of which are within walking distance — and is minutes away from Sherway Gardens and Cloverdale Mall, the latter of which happens to be the site of a massive redevelopment project as well.

The brochure additionally notes that the site is currently occupied by a single-storey commercial building that’s vacant, as well as a surface parking lot. The property is being offered on an “unpriced basis.”

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