House 1 / Kyra Clarkson Architect

© Steven Evans Photography

Architects: Kyra Clarkson Architect – Kyra Clarkson, Christopher Glaisek
Location: 154 Rhodes Avenue, , ON, Canada
Completion Date: May 2012
Area: 1,800 sqm (1,260 above grade)
Landscape Architect: Elise Shelley Landscape Architect
Contractor: Collaborative Ventures Inc.
Photographs: Steven Evans Photography

© Steven Evans Photography

Modernest is a new design and development initiative with a mission to offer affordable, architect-designed houses with a modern sensibility, on family-friendly streets in vibrant downtown Toronto neighbourhoods with easy access to good schools, public parks, transit lines and local shops. Presenting a striking alternative to typical neo-traditional builders’ homes, Modernest creates high-quality houses that are evocative of their time and that compliment a contemporary, urban lifestyle.

This mandate is exemplified by the company’s pilot project titled simply House 1. Situated on Rhodes Avenue in Toronto’s lively Leslieville neighbourhood, House 1 is modest and contemporary, yet sympathetically integrated with nearby houses due to its similar scale, setback and its natural materials. The house is characterized by its flexibility, its abundance of natural light and its views to the outdoors. It is framed by mature trees and the neighbourhood’s eclectic surroundings.


Modernest was established by and Kyra Clarkson and Christopher Glaisek. The partners in life and work met as architecture students at Yale University. She is now an architect; he is an urban planner, and they are parents of two young children. “We felt that there were limited choices in Toronto’s housing market for people wanting a modern aesthetic but without the time, budget or inclination to commission a custom-designed home themselves,” Clarkson explains. “By creating quality, honest and inspiring homes with a modern spirit, we aspire to strengthen communities and revitalize the urban fabric,” Glaisek adds.

Clarkson and Glaisek’s architectural training inspired them to proudly demonstrate the quality that goes into every stage of a Modernest home. From the conceptual drawings of the space, to daily videos documenting the construction process, House 1’s buyer will know what informed every aspect of the house’s construction and what is hidden behind its walls.

floor plans
Cite: "House 1 / Kyra Clarkson Architect" 28 May 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed 23 May 2015. <>