TORONTO, Nov. 27, 2013 /CNW/ - The 519 submitted a report to City
Council today which, if approved, marks the first official step in
building a new sports and recreation centre for the City of Toronto.
The proposed facility will focus on the lesbian, gay, bi and trans
communities while also providing much-needed community recreation space
for residents in the new West Don Lands community. The project is being
developed in response to the demand for additional recreation
facilities created by shifting demographics and increased density in
the downtown area. The report requests authority for staff of the City
of Toronto and The 519 to begin negotiations with Infrastructure
Ontario on the Wheel and Foundry Complex near Underpass Park and
"The 519 Sports and Recreation Project demonstrates global leadership on
LGBT inclusion, building on the success of our internationally-renowned
programs and services," said Tyler Fleming, Chair of The 519 Board.
"The new community centre will be the first of its kind anywhere in the
world, providing a welcoming, inclusive space for Torontonians, and
particularly LGBT people to participate in sport."
"This project builds on Toronto's long history of diversity and
community development by providing a truly inclusive place where
Torontonians can gather and be active together," said Maura Lawless,
Executive Director of The 519. "We know that when we address the
barriers that LGBT people face, we help to make sport and recreation
more accessible for everyone who may feel excluded. We look forward to
developing a facility that the entire city can take pride in."
The proposed community centre is estimated to cost $100 million and will
be funded in large part by private donations. It is anticipated that
two-thirds of the cost of the project will be contributed by individual
and corporate donations and that investments from municipal, provincial
and federal governments will account for one-third of the project cost.
Once built, the facility will be owned by the City of Toronto and
operated by The 519, which is an agency of the city.
Above and beyond the proposed facility, The 519 has steadily expanded
their involvement in sports and recreation through programming,
training and capacity building activities. As trustee of the
PrideHouseTO initiative, The 519 is working with over 15 organizations
to celebrate and promote LGBT communities during and leading up to the
2015 Pan Am / Para Pan Am Games in Toronto.
About The 519:
For over 35 years, The 519 has been working with our neighbours and our
lesbian, gay, bi, trans and queer (LGBTQ) communities to build healthy,
welcoming spaces to meet, participate and celebrate together.
With the support of our Board and staff team, our communities identify
and implement solutions to emerging issues through award-winning
programs and services, and with the leadership of volunteers, over 80
community-led programs provide peer support, social, recreational and
cultural opportunities in our public meeting spaces.
The 519 is an agency of the City of Toronto.
SOURCE: The 519 Church Street Community Centre
For further information:
Director, Strategic Partnership Initiatives
The 519 Church Street Community Centre
Direct: 416 355 6798