Canadian Contractor

Steve Payne   

Toronto house under construction blown sideways by high winds

Canadian Contractor

Toronto Building Department orders the leaning structure demolished. Man identified as builder blames "the design company."

High winds in Toronto on Wednesday night blew sideways a 3-storey home under construction. The stick frame structure bent into a trapezoidal figure under the 60 km/hr gusts and was only restrained from collapsing entirely by the existing house next door. The failure points are on the ground floor, which seem to lack even rudimentary bracing.

The structure, at 63 Leslie Street, south of Queen St. in the city’s east end, has been ordered demolished by the Toronto Building Department.

The Ontario Ministry of Labour told media that the contractor is 66 GC LTD., a Markham, ON-based firm. No charges had been laid at press time. Neighbours will not be allowed to re-enter their premises until the leaning structure is torn down – which may take 3-4 days, pending an approved demolition plan.

Canadian Contractor publisher Rob Koci was on the scene the morning after the approx. 11 pm collapse, and was interviewed by four TV stations.


Koci told CITY-TV news that bracing – or the lack of it – was an obvious contributor to the collapse: “The framing is left wide open which means there is nothing on either end of the building to hold it up,” he said. “The fact that there is no bracing inside the house, plus these massive openings on either end, make it almost impossible for the house to stand up [under the wind conditions].”

The owner of 66 GC LTD. is one Zhi Li, of Markham, according to Federal Corporation Information. A man who claimed to be the contractor, but who refused to identify himself to media, said that it was “the design company” who had messed up. The design firm has not been identified.

However, it is interesting to note that 66 GC LTD., which was federally incorporated in Markham in May 2011, had its business licence dissolved for “non-compiance” in March 2015. However, the building that this particular firm was constructing was permitted and had had its foundation work inspected in December. According to CITY-TV News, it failed.

Watch the interview with Rob Koci here.




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5 Comments » for Toronto house under construction blown sideways by high winds
  1. Peter Toenz says:

    That is what you get for paying a shoemaker doing serious construction work!

  2. Questo says:

    I would not spend not even one cent on this property location, never mind build something so weird. Anyway, the owner of this property may sue the City of Toronto and the builder. How can a such type of building was even allowed to start? inspected and pass? when could not stand 60kmh wind speed? That’s weird. This shows how weird construction rules have became in Toronto area. Its money money money first, and all this weird stuff, looking like a pigeon houses.

  3. Rob says:

    I would love to see the plans for that house. I wonder if there were shear wall details that weren’t followed? Or if the city passed the plans without lateral support in the design? Either way, I don’t know how the city can be held accountable if they, apparently, didn’t even pass the foundation inspections.

  4. Joe says:

    When you pay peanuts you get monkeys,
    Nowadays the builders or g.c. Are the monkeys

    Watch a few reality shows, get some drawings made up and there home builders,

    great job, we need more unqualified builders like this, it makes more work for the pros..

    Now a days 50% of our work is repairing work recently performed by others. Its good for business

    I’d like to say to fellow experienced contractors, charge more, work less. They’ll always be shoty contractors in our business

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