TORONTO, April 16, 2012 /CNW/ - Arbitration Place, a fully integrated state-of-the-art arbitration hearing centre in the heart of Toronto's financial district, will formally open its doors April 18, 2012, with some of Canada's most distinguished arbitrators.
Arbitration Place, which will host both domestic and international arbitrations, will serve as the Canadian home for major international institutions such as the London Court of International Arbitration, and ICC Canada, the Canadian National Committee of the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce.
Resident Arbitrators who will be on the premises include Yves Fortier, past President of the London Court of International Arbitration and ranked as one of the leading arbitrators in the world; the Honourable Ian Binnie, former Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada; the Honourable Coulter A. Osborne, former Associate Chief Justice of Ontario; Stanley G. Fisher, a member of ICC Canada, and Thomas G. Heintzman, former president of the Canadian Bar Association.
"The arbitrators assembled by Arbitration Place are remarkable and I am honoured to count myself in such company," says Mr. Fortier, who has served as arbitrator on more than 100 international arbitration tribunals over the past 20 years. "I've done arbitrations around the world and there was always something missing for me. I was never able to say to my fellow arbitrators: 'Next time, in Canada.' Now, with Arbitration Place, I can. Arbitration Place compares very favourably with the best facilities anywhere."
Canada deserves to be an international seat of arbitration, says Mr. Binnie, considered one of the most influential judges in the country prior to his retirement from the top court at the end of 2011.
"Canada has a well-deserved reputation for neutrality. It is bilingual, comfortable with common and civil law, multicultural and accessible, and it has all the advantages of being right next to the United States - one of the epicentres of the business world - without being part of it. Canada is a natural location for international arbitrations."
Mr. Osborne, one of Canada's busiest commercial arbitrators, adds that "the Canadian courts have demonstrated deference to arbitration agreements and a willingness to enforce arbitral awards. Canada also has great economic and political stability and one of the best banking systems in the world. What we may have lacked to this point is a world-class arbitration facility. Arbitration Place should help change the landscape."
In addition to state-of-the-art hearing rooms, Arbitration Place prides itself on offering an "all-encompassing approach" with on-site court reporting services, a range of translation and interpretation services, in-house counsel who is available to serve as secretary, or clerk, to the tribunal, experienced administrative and technical support, and a full-service concierge team.
"The quality of the people involved in Arbitration Place couldn't be better," says Mr. Fisher. "The executive assistants are accommodating and professional; and nothing you ask the concierge staff is too much trouble. Attention to detail is a hallmark. Whether you need a translator who speaks Urdu or an official transcript the next morning, they deliver. You really could not ask for a better environment in which to conduct an arbitration."
The Arbitration Place offices are located in the Bay Adelaide Centre, one of Toronto's newest office towers, which has been awarded LEED Gold Status for environmental sustainability. Everything inside Arbitration Place, from the Herman Miller chairs to the specially designed broad-spectrum lighting systems, has been designed with ergonomics and comfort in mind.
"When you've been in a hearing room for three days or three weeks, the little things really matter," says Mr. Heintzman, one of Canada's most experienced and best-known litigators. "The quality of hearing rooms and breakout rooms is impeccable and they even have an arbitration library and resource centre. But it goes beyond that. Arbitration Place is committed to being a resource and sponsors programs and develops web-based tools designed to keep Canada abreast of key international developments, and educate the rest of the world about Canada. Arbitration Place is the entire package."
Arbitration Place also has leading Member Arbitrators including Barry Leon, head of the International Arbitration Group at Perley-Robertson, Hill & McDougall LLP and Chair of ICC Canada; Earl Cherniak, senior Partner at Lerners LLP and Committee Chair of the Toronto Commercial Arbitrators Society; John Judge, a senior partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP; John Lorn McDougall, partner emeritus and counsel to Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP and former Chair of ICC Canada; Harry Radomski, head of the Intellectual Property Litigation Group at Goodmans LLP; Janet Walker, former Associate Dean at Osgoode Hall Law School; Louise Barrington, founding director of the ICC Asia in Hong Kong and the Vis East International Commercial Arbitration Moot; Honourable Konrad von Finckenstein, former chairman of the Canadian Radio and Television Commission; and Joseph Nuss, former Justice of the Quebec Court of Appeal and senior counsel with Woods LLP.
Kimberley Stewart, CEO and founder of Arbitration Place, says her goal was to bring the best people together with the best facilities and support, and stand back and let them do their work.
"My vision is for a world class, fully integrated arbitration centre based in Canada," said Ms. Stewart. "My hope is it will help put Canada on the map as a place for international arbitration."
About Arbitration Place
Arbitration Place is a fully integrated international arbitration centre located in the heart of Canada's financial district in downtown Toronto. It features a roster of recognized Resident and Member Arbitrators and also welcomes guest arbitrators from around the world. For more information please visit www.arbitrationplace.com.
For further information:
or to arrange an interview with Yves Fortier or Kimberley Stewart, please contact Deborah Bowden-Jones at Dewar Legal Communications 416.921.1827.