Lillian Massey Building

I’ve been obsessed with this place for the better part of fifteen years.

This structure was originally built between 1908-1912, as the home of the Household Sciences Program attached to the University of Toronto. That program was started by Lillian Massey Tremble.

Currently several departments of U of T have offices in the ROM facing section of the Lillian Massey Building, but I associate the structure with the retailer Club Monaco. At least I did, up until 2021, when they gave it up. A large portion of the Bloor-facing section, which housed Club Monaco, currently sits vacant.

In these photographs you can see three stages of the building’s recent history. The active Club Monaco phase with mannequin, the COVID phase with plywood over the windows, and the vacant phase with opaque paper and painter’s tape covering all the glass.

One of the most fascinating things about this place is that I’ve never once been inside, and through reading about it discovered, that as part of the Club Monaco renovation in 2007, an underground pool in the basement was covered over to create the men’s section of the store.

If interested there are archival images and more background on the Lillian Massey Building in this BlogTO article, and in a post on The U of T site.