Toronto (April 23, 2015) – PortsToronto today announced that it will dedicate land at the base of Cherry Street for the development of a community hockey and skating complex. This land will provide space for the construction of a new building with approximately 75,000 square feet to accommodate an indoor, two-pad ice rink. The building will also include space for locker rooms, viewing areas and associated amenities. Plans for the complex will be developed in the next 18 months with a view to opening the facility within the next three years.
PortsToronto will work with the City of Toronto and Waterfront Toronto to ensure that the building is in keeping with the future vision for the area and to address such planning issues as sanitary servicing, storm water management, accessibility, architectural design and fit with surrounding areas, including parkland. Although the tract of land is on federal property, PortsToronto has asked that the project be reviewed as a Site Plan Application to ensure city planning and servicing issues are addressed in advance of construction.
“Over the past few years, PortsToronto has worked to improve the utilization of every single asset within our domain. We’ve succeeded at the Outer Harbour Marina and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, and hope to soon break ground at 30 Bay Street,” said Mark McQueen, Chairman, PortsToronto. “For a city covered in ice and snow for so many months of the year, indoor ice rinks are in surprisingly short supply in Toronto, particularly for girls hoping to play organized hockey. By providing PortsToronto-owned land, and spearheading this initiative, we will ensure the development of a new state-of-the-art hockey complex for a growing population of downtowners. Hockey is a point of nation-defining pride and passion among Canadians and a sport that is inclusive of both genders and all ability levels. We are proud to make this investment in the City, one which will be of particular benefit to the waterfront community.”
The project will be developed on land owned by PortsToronto, a financially self-sufficient government business enterprise which reports to the Federal Government through Transport Canada. The arena complex will be developed through a Request For Expression of Interest (RFEI) issued on a broad basis through MERX, followed by a Request for Proposal issued to a selected short-list of potential developers. PortsToronto has identified the tract of land and will provide the land to a developer under a long-term lease. The selected developer will in turn develop the business plan, construct the building and manage the operations of the facility, which will be branded the PortsToronto Arena.
"As the mother of two young boys who love playing hockey, this ticks all the right boxes," said The Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Transportation. "It's a sport that connects people with their country, and has seen its appeal grow among girls as well as boys. Canada turns out some of the best players in the world, so it is wise to invest at the grassroots level to ensure kids have more places to practice and play. I applaud PortsToronto for dedicating its land for this use, as it will bring additional rinks to the Toronto area, and in a location where such facilities are scarce."
"Toronto is the hockey capital of the world, and any plan to have more indoor ice surfaces is good news, especially in the dense core of the city”, said Toronto Mayor John Tory. "I applaud the efforts of PortsToronto to dedicate land at the foot of Cherry Street to develop an arena that not only serves the public and hockey enthusiasts, but adds value to the revitalization of our waterfront.”
The Request for Expression of Interest (RFEI) associated with this initiative is now available for review on MERX at www.merx.com
. Expressions of Interest are to be submitted to PortsToronto by May 12, 2015.
For more than 100 years PortsToronto, (formerly the Toronto Port Authority), has worked with its partners at the federal, provincial and municipal levels to enhance the economic growth of the City of Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area. PortsToronto owns and operates Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, which welcomes more than two million passengers each year; the Outer Harbour Marina, one of Canada's largest freshwater marinas; and, Terminals 51 and 52, which provide transportation, distribution, storage and container services to businesses at the Port of Toronto. PortsToronto is committed to fostering strong, healthy and sustainable communities and has invested more than $6.7 million since 2009 in charitable initiatives and environmental programs that benefit communities along Toronto's waterfront and beyond. PortsToronto operates in accordance with the Canada Marine Act and is guided by a nine-member board with representation from all three levels of government.
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