Great Offices: Torys’ gallery-like headquarters at Wellington and York
What: Famed corporate law firm Torys’ Toronto headquarters
Where: The soaring steel and glass Toronto-Dominion Centre at Wellington and York
How Big: 180,000 square feet over nine floors for a staff of 700
The most ambitious aspect of Torys’ 2007 office revamp was the so-called client floor, which actually spans a storey and a half, on the 32nd and 33rd floors. It contains not a single lawyer’s office. Instead, there is a series of reception areas and interconnected meeting rooms, with eye-popping views of the lake, which the firm uses not just for client meetings and teleconferences but also to celebrate big deal closings and major promotions. The restrained palette showcases a curated selection from the firm’s multi-million-dollar Canadian art collection. KPMB partner Marianne McKenna and her colleague Steven Casey, the designers behind the reno, also widened the hallways from the usual five or six feet to a generous 10, to make sure both employees and visitors linger long enough to take in the art. Lawyers who pass by every day still stop to peer at a perspective-bending image by Alain Paiement, and occasionally, mid-meeting, someone will look up from the table to wonder if the originals on the wall are by A. J. Casson (they are).