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On the map: Affordable units in “the Forest Hill” of Burlington

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Before closing for good in 2022, the Dollar Tree store at 490 Plains Rd. E. in Burlington was a magnet for thrifty shoppers. Now, reborn as the new 3,300-square-foot sales centre for Northshore Condos, a different kind of bargain-hunter is being courted.

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Slated to include two eight-storey condo buildings and scores of stacked townhomes, the pre-construction project from developer National Homes is initially highlighting the half-million-dollar starting prices of the 153 units in its Phase 1 mid-rise.

“What’s really resonating with buyers is the affordability factor,” says Jason Pantalone, National’s president and managing partner. “Starting from the $500,000s for a one-bedroom unit, and with 70 percent of the building under $700,000, our price points are the same as what other developers are asking for studios. So a lot of the downsizers in Burlington are getting more space, and better finishes and amenities, along with all the great local restaurants, nightlife and shopping in Northshore, which is like the Forest Hill of Toronto.”

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This comparison is borne out by roomy residential lots and multimillion-dollar homes dotting one of Burlington’s oldest neighbourhoods. The Northshore condo project is also within walking distance of the 18-hole Burlington Golf and Country Club, and LaSalle Park & Pavilion, a 57-acre lakefront green space featuring sports fields, a playground, a wading pool and splash pad, an expansive picnic area and a 219-slip marina. The park’s namesake meeting and banquet hall, meanwhile, is the starting point for numerous walking trails.

According to Pantalone, two other demographics being targeted by the project — young professionals and families — appreciate its close proximity to Highway 403 and the Queen Elizabeth Way, as well as to the Aldershot and Burlington GO stations. “Transit-oriented developments like this allow younger professionals to work in downtown Toronto and still benefit from the lower cost of living and rich amenities of a suburban market,” Pantalone says. “At the same time, they get to live in a building that isn’t cutting any corners on design.”

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Suites start at 523 square feet for one-bedroom units. “We’re not doing studios,” says National Homes president Jason Pantalone. “Let’s leave those in downtown Toronto.” Photo by Supplied

The work of Kirkor Architects and Planners, Northshore’s sleek exterior is layered with private balconies and terraces, and topped with a communal outdoor lounge and terrace featuring a cabana, kitchen, barbecues and dining areas. On the ground floor, the project’s 5,000 square feet of amenities include a dog wash station; a co-working space, lounge and boardroom; a chef’s kitchen, bar and dining room; a party room and lounge; and a yoga-studio-equipped gym.

“We didn’t just take what worked in Brampton, or Mississauga, or Toronto, and apply it to Burlington,” Pantalone says. “We used focus groups to find out about the kinds of amenities, architecture and features local residents want to see.”

“More space for less money” came through loud and clear, he says, with Northshore’s suites ranging from 523-square-foot one-bedroom units to three-bedrooms approaching a thousand square feet. “We’re not doing studios,” he adds. “Let’s leave those in downtown Toronto.”

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Regardless of size, every suite has 9- or 10-foot ceilings, designer kitchen cabinetry with soft-close hinges, undermount kitchen and bathroom sinks, quartz kitchen and bathroom countertops, and stainless-steel appliance packages, with National targeting Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification upon Northshore’s scheduled Phase 1 completion in 2025.

For more information, visit or the sales centre at 490 Plains Rd. E.

Rooftoo terrace
Amenities include an outdoor lounge and terrace with a cabana, kitchen, barbecues and dining areas. Photo by Supplied

Three things

Opened in 2011, the Burlington Performing Arts Centre (BPAC) features a Main Theatre with a six-storey fly tower; a Community Studio Theatre; and the Family Lobby, an open-concept glass-roofed space encircled by a balcony. 440 Locust St., Burlington

Since the summer of 2022, a new 200-metre-long pocket track at the Aldershot GO Train station has supported increased service west to Hamilton and Niagara. 1199 Waterdown Rd., Burlington

On Sunday evenings from July 2 to Aug. 27, the Royal Botanical Gardens are hosting free musical performances by award-winning local musicians in a gloriously floral setting. Garden admission or membership is required. 680 Plains Rd. W., Burlington.

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