Clearly, someone has invested a great deal to bring this heritage building into the current millennium.
That "someone" is Clayton Smith of the Commercial Realty Group. I'm not fond of the glass enclosure at the top of the building, but otherwise I'd say Smith's architects (George Robb/George Popper) have done exemplary work.
Here's another shot (different digital "filter"). Notice the closed discount shoe place to the right (the north side of the building, both facing east).
If we continue south down Yonge Street, we see further restoration/upgrade efforts of a similar commitment under way.
Crossing the street and facing east, we have this to look at:
This is typical of this portion of Yonge Street, which begins at the south at Front Street and extends north to Bloor Street. The majority of store fronts suggest relatively low rents, and shelves stocked with goods that have "fallen" off the back of a truck.
Even after Queen Street "gentrified" into just another Mall of America, there is no shortage of these sorts of enterprises or commercial districts in Toronto. It could be argued that just about any North American down town is similarly populated, but what is notable about this particular stretch of Yonge is its proximity to Bay Street, and the vaunted TSX. It's been some years since I was last in NYC, so you tell me: are there discount shoe stores and sports nutrition franchises flanking Wall Street?
That building housing "Popeye's" caught my eye, as well -- though not for complimentary reasons. I wondered if, with its reliance on concrete as a means to an aesthetic end, it was an example of "Brutalism." If so, it would be a very early entrant -- this is the Lumsden (now "Dynamic") Building, built in 1910.
Here is some history of the Lumsden Building. I'm not as taken with the Lumsden as the author, but there's no denying its fascinating history (Turkish bath in the basement!), or the imprint it leaves on the immediate neighbourhood. As is, it poses direct aesthetic challenges to its surroundings, and the current attempts to rejuvenate aesthetic appeal and interest.
Here is a profile of Clayton Smith, prior to the Dineen's improvements. The restoration won honourable mention in the 2013 Heritage Toronto Awards. Here is the Dineen Coffee site.