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September 2, 2008
Mayor Miller announces details, pilot sites for Mayor's Tower Renewal
The environment and residents in Toronto's 1,000 decades-old concrete slab apartment towers will be the beneficiaries of Mayor's Tower Renewal, an ambitious new project unveiled today by Mayor David Miller.

"Mayor's Tower Renewal will bring building upgrades, community reinvestment and greening initiatives, which will foster vibrant communities, and significantly reduce greenhouse gases throughout any city," said Mayor Miller. "It will also place new expectations of complete and sustainable communities upon our neighbourhoods, and will provide a variety of tools to create positive change.

Mayor's Tower Renewal focuses on delivering social, economic, cultural and environmental benefits by renewing concrete high-rise residential towers. Built in the 1960s and 1970s, concrete slab construction towers are found in cities around the world - from Chongqing to Chicago - with about 1,000 located in Toronto."

Four sites - one in each of the city's community council areas - have already been selected to participate in the pilot project. They are:

. West: 2667 and 2677 Kipling Ave. - two 460-unit, 23 floor buildings
. East: 215 Markham Rd. - 192 units, 18 floors
. South: 200 Wellesley St. E./275 Bleecker St. - 711 units, 30 floors/322 units, 22 floors
. North: 175 Shaughnessy Blvd. - 18 floors, 139 units.

At its core, the project relies on cladding the high-rise buildings in a way that reduces energy use by 50 per cent or greater while decreasing greenhouse gas emissions by three to five per cent for the entire urban area. But Mayor's Tower Renewal will do much more, including:

. create local green jobs
. increase on-site small-scale retail and markets
. upgrade green space around the buildings
. provide improved space for neighbourhood interactions
. install solar, wind and geothermal energy and green roofs
. increase water conservation and on-site management of waste
. increase the demand for locally-produced green and clean technology
. foster community gardens and urban agriculture at the sites.

"Mayor's Tower Renewal offers an exciting opportunity to do the right thing for the environment, the right thing for neighbourhoods and the right thing for people by making cities more liveable and prosperous," said Mayor Miller. "The threat posed by climate change is the issue of our time; maybe of all time. As Canada's biggest city we have an opportunity and an obligation to lead by example."

Information about Mayor's Tower Renewal is available at

In addition to the Toronto initiative, Mayor Miller, as chair of the C40 Group of large cities fighting climate change, is asking member mayors to adopt and adapt the principles and objectives of the program in and for their cities.

"We know that 80 per cent of the world's population lives in cities," said Mayor Miller. "Working together cities can bring about real, tangible reductions in greenhouse gases that benefit all."

Media contact:
Stuart Green, Office of Mayor Miller, 416-338-7119



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