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May 20, 2010
Doors Open Toronto 2010 program highlights - 'Get into architecture'
This year’s edition of Doors Open Toronto on Saturday, May 29 and Sunday, May 30 will present up to 150 buildings that highlight the architectural diversity of Toronto. This free city-wide event features more than 40 new locations as well as numerous walks and talks. The official program guide will be published in the Toronto Star newspaper on Thursday, May 27.

Doors Open Toronto offers many free exclusive architecturally-themed locations. Details about each participating venue are listed on the "Buildings to visit" page at

New Locations: A number of iconic Toronto buildings are new to Doors Open Toronto this year, including the restored Allstream Centre at Exhibition Place, the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives, Stephen Caras Design in a 1905 former bank building, and the Sunnyside Pavilion. Visitors get rare access to Toronto’s first Jewish burial site, at the Pape Avenue Cemetery, and can learn about Buddhist practice at the Kadampa Meditation Centre Canada.

The new Rogers Studios (home to Citytv and OMNI Television) opens its doors on Sunday only. Quadrangle Architects Ltd. will be on site to talk about designing this state-of-the-art broadcast facility. A new industrial location is the Portlands Energy Centre, where mandatory protective wear is provided for a limited number of tours on Saturday only. The home of Second City celebrates 35 years of its comedic legacy while Gilda’s Club of Greater Toronto welcomes visitors to its Lombard Street Firehall centre for cancer support. Frontier College showcases 110 years as Canada’s original literacy organization in Gzowski House. New places of worship include Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints, First Narayever Congregation and St. Stanislaus Kostka Roman Catholic Church.

Welcome Back: Several popular venues return to the roster this year following a hiatus, including Le Méridien King Edward hotel (featuring the Crystal Ballroom), the award-winning McKinsey Building and the Redpath Sugar Refinery. The Royal Alexandra Theatre welcomes presentations by Lorna Harris, grand-daughter of architect John Lyle.

Ask an Architect: Architecture is the theme of this year’s Doors Open Toronto. Ten Toronto firms open their doors to showcase their work: Bortolotto Design Architects; Diamond and Schmitt Architects; du Toit Allsopp Hillier/ du Toit Architects; Farrow Partnership Architects; Kasian Architects; Levitt Goodman Architects; Moriyama and Teshima Architects; Stantec Architects Office; Taylor Smyth Architects; and Zeidler Partnership Architects.

Several venues host their architects, including Bethel Green Senior Residence and Church (Robert Reimers); City Hall Podium Green Roof (Chris Pommer/Plant Architect Inc.); Evergreen Brick Works (Joe Lobko); Hugh Garner Housing Co-op Green Roof (Monica Kuhn); Humber Arboretum (Taylor Hazell Architects); Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church (Teeple Architects Inc.); St. Gabriel’s Church (Roberto Chiotti/Larkin Architects); Toronto Community Housing’s new property at 501 Adelaide St. E. (Adam Feldmann/Architects Alliance ); Toronto Transit Commission - Mount Dennis Bus Garage; and University of Toronto’s Regis College (Kevin Weiss/Larkin Architects). profiles a number of locations and their architects at

Walk the Walks: The Toronto Society of Architects (TSA) launches two new guided architecture walking tours, available for free only on the Doors Open Toronto weekend. “Toronto’s Cultural Renaissance: Buildings of the 21st Century” highlights the architecture of the city’s recent “cultural renaissance” (three times daily) while “Skyscrapers of the Financial District” features the historic to modern buildings of the financial district (twice daily). The TSA offers these tours hourly from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Attendees can register at the TSA’s table at Toronto City Hall from 10 a.m. each day. Space is limited. More information about this program is available at

Keep Walking! Shawn Micallef, author of the new book "Stroll: Psychogeographic Walking Tours of Toronto," leads a stroll through the Annex from Coach House Press on Saturday at 1 p.m. Factory Theatre offers building and walking tours/talks around its historic Irish Claretown area conducted by local historian Joanne Doucette (Saturday and Sunday).

At Evergreen Brick Works, Diaspora Dialogues presents literary walking tours of the quarry on the theme of labour and architecture with Toronto artist guides Gein Wong, janet romero-leiva, Gili Haimovich, Samantha Bernstein and Falen Johnson (Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.).

There are also walking tours of the Beach community (Saturday only, 10 a.m. and noon), the revitalized Regent Park Phase One (Sunday only) and departing from Fort York (Sunday at 1 p.m.).

Steamy attractions: Audiences will be able to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Trillium, the last side-wheeler paddle steamer operating in North America, which will be moored both days at the water’s edge in Harbour Square Park (west of the Toronto Island Ferry Docks). The captain, steam engineer and crew as well as columnist-historian Mike Filey will be on board.

Toronto's railway heritage gets on track at the opening of the Toronto Railway Heritage Centre and Roundhouse Park. Heritage locomotives are featured alongside a functioning interlocking tower, the restored historic Don Station and a miniature railway traversing the park. Enjoy tours of Steam Whistle Brewing, housed in the John Street Roundhouse.

Family activities: More than 30 Doors Open Toronto locations will offer activities and events for families. The Horse Palace at Exhibition Place and the Evergreen Brick Works will provide programs all weekend. A full list of locations and the 2010 Kids’ Guide to Doors Open Toronto (produced by City Parent), which includes a number of activities for children, is available online at and at select Doors Open Toronto locations.

Official Launch: Doors Open Toronto launches at the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) on Friday, May 28, 4:30 to 9:30 p.m. Admission to the ROM is free and includes comedy by Second City and Afro-Latin music by Santerias. CityNews anchor and reporter Roger Petersen will emcee. Discussions include the launch of A Guidebook to Contemporary Architecture in Toronto with panelists Bruce Kuwabara, Larry Wayne Richards, William Thorsell and authors Margaret and Phil Goodfellow - moderated by Christopher Hume, Toronto Star. Author Shawn Micallef and illustrator Marlena Zuber discuss psychogeography and Toronto’s neighbourhoods. All museum galleries will be open.

Doors Open Toronto has attracted more than 1.5 million visitors since it began, with more than 250,000 attendees in 2009. Toronto was the first North American city to launch a Doors Open event and has advised programs like Doors Open Ontario and Open House New York. In 2009/2010 Doors Open Toronto received two national awards: the City Soul Award from the Canadian Urban Institute's Urban Leadership Awards and an Award of Outstanding Achievement in Marketing from the Canadian Museums Association. In April 2010 Doors Open Toronto received the first-ever City Manager's Award for Toronto Public Service Excellence from the City of Toronto.

The public can now connect and interact with Doors Open Toronto through social media: Facebook, Twitter and Youtube. Visit the Doors Open Toronto website for links to its social media.

Doors Open Toronto is produced by the City of Toronto and sponsored by the Toronto Star. Media sponsor: Citytv. Program Sponsor: Woodcliffe. Program Partners: Indigo Books and Music Inc. and Toronto Society of Architects. Media can download high resolution images at

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto's government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents. For information about non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Media contacts:
Shane Gerard, Senior Promotions & Communications Coordinator,
Cluster A Communications Unit, 416-397-5711,
Jane French, Project Manager, Doors Open Toronto,
Museum Services, Cultural Services, 416-338-0496,



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