Canada and Ontario invest over $3.8 million to support two recreation and cultural facilities in North York

News release

Toronto, Ontario, July 09, 2021— Across the country, Canadians are feeling the impact of COVID-19, on their families, their livelihoods, and their way of life. Together, Canada and Ontario are working to reduce the impact of the pandemic, ensure health and safety, rebuild businesses, and promote job creation, growth and investment.

Today, Ali Ehsassi, Parliamentary Secretary to the Federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry (Innovation and Industry) and Member of Parliament for Willowdale, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Federal Minister of Infrastructure and Communities; the Honourable Stan Cho, Ontario’s Associate Minister of Transportation and Member of Provincial Parliament for Willowdale, on behalf of the Honourable Kinga Surma, Ontario’s Minister of Infrastructure; His Worship John Tory, Mayor of the City of Toronto; and Peter Fuchs, Chairperson of the North York Seniors Centre, announced joint funding to improve the accessibility of the Meridian Arts Centre and the North York Seniors Centre.

The Government of Canada is investing over $2 million in accessibility improvements to the Meridian Arts Centre through the Community, Culture and Recreation Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada plan. The Government of Ontario is providing nearly $1.7 million, and the City of Toronto is contributing more than $1.3 million.

The project involves a number of accessibility improvements to the theatre seating areas and workspaces at the Meridian Arts Centre to better meet community needs. In the Lyric Theatre, the George Weston Recital Hall and the Greenwin Theatre accessible seating will be added and expanded. Other improvements include the conversion of a control room to a barrier-free workspace, the addition of a lift to allow access to the stage from the orchestra level, and the installation of an elevator for better access to seating areas and to the control room for employees. Once complete, all patrons of the arts, including those living with disabilities will be able to participate in all cultural experiences that the Meridian Arts Centre has to offer.

The Government of Canada is investing over $66,000 for the renovation of a fitness centre washroom and changeroom at the North York Seniors Centre through the Community, Culture and Recreation Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada plan. The Government of Ontario is providing over $55,000, and the North York Seniors Centre is contributing more than $44,000.

With this funding, an accessible changeroom for users of the fitness centre will be created and an existing bathroom will be renovated to meet the requirements of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. This project will help improve access to modern recreational infrastructure and better meet the needs of the community.

All orders of government continue to work together for the people of Ontario to make strategic infrastructure investments in communities across the province when needed most.

Quotes

“Community centres and cultural facilities are at the heart of communities where people want to live, work and raise their families. Federal funding for accessibility improvements to the Meridian Arts Centre and the North York Seniors’ Centre will enhance our community’s access to modern and inclusive spaces for many years to come. Canada’s infrastructure plan invests in thousands of projects, creates jobs across the country, and builds cleaner, more inclusive communities right across Canada.”

Ali Ehsassi, Parliamentary Secretary to the Federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry (Innovation and Industry)  and Member of Parliament for Willowdale, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Federal Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

“I am proud of the investments the federal government and province are making in our community of Willowdale. I love to see the three levels of government working together for the betterment of our neighbourhood. These much-needed funds will go a long way in making it possible for people with physical challenges to enjoy the vibrant cultural shows and displays at the Meridian Arts Centre by making the centre more accessible. Seniors in Willowdale will also see the benefit of upgrades to the washrooms and change rooms when they are at the fitness centre at the North York Seniors Centre.”

The Honourable Stan Cho, Ontario’s Associate Minister of Transportation and Member of Provincial Parliament for Willowdale, on behalf of the Honourable Kinga Surma, Ontario’s Minister of Infrastructure

“I want to thank both the federal and provincial governments for investing in these two facilities in North York. These investment in Toronto will be of great benefit for both residents today and generations to come. The accessibility upgrades at both the Meridian Arts Centre and the North York Seniors Centre ensure that these gathering places become more widely accessible for people to enjoy and help cultivate a more inclusive city.”

His Worship John Tory, Mayor of the City of Toronto

“North York Seniors Centre is delighted to receive funding through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP). COVID-19 has highlighted the importance of maintaining social connections, and physical and mental well-being, especially for our senior community. We are eager to welcome seniors back to the Active Living Centre so they may resume living life to the fullest. Funding for this project will ensure the Centre is welcoming, safe and accessible to all older adults post pandemic and for years to come.”

Peter Fuchs, Chairperson, North York Seniors Centre

Quick facts

  • Through the Investing in Canada plan, the federal government is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.

  • Across Ontario, the Government of Canada has invested more than $14 billion in over 3,800 infrastructure projects.

  • Over the next ten years, the Government of Ontario is investing approximately $320 million across the province, and the federal government is investing approximately $407 million under the Community, Culture and Recreation Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program. This stream supports the construction of new facilities and upgrades to existing facilities that improve community infrastructure (e.g. community centres, libraries), recreational venues (e.g. arenas, recreational spaces) and cultural spaces (e.g. theatres, museums).

  • Ontario is investing over $10.2 billion under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to improve public transit; community, culture and recreation; green, and rural and northern community and other priority infrastructure.

  • Across Canada, since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic the Government of Canada has contributed $9.7 billion to 3,500 infrastructure projects.

Associated links

Contacts

Emelyana Titarenko
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
873-355-9576
emelyana.titarenko@canada.ca

Christine Bujold
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Kinga Surma, Ontario’s Minister of Infrastructure
416-454-1782
christine.bujold@ontario.ca

Sofia Sousa-Dias
Communications Branch
Ontario Ministry of Infrastructure
437-991-3391
sofia.sousa-dias@ontario.ca

Lawvin Hadisi
Press Secretary
Office of the Mayor
City of Toronto
647-460-5607
lawvin.hadisi@toronto.ca

Media Relations
Infrastructure Canada
613-960-9251
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154
Email: media@infc.gc.ca
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