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December 13, 2005
City of Toronto invests in the future of Toronto’s history at Fort York
City Council has endorsed ‘Fort York: Adding New Buildings,’ a study that outlines a long-term plan for the revitalization of the City’s most important historic site and the very birthplace of urban Toronto - Fort York.

‘Fort York: Adding New Buildings’ sets out a 10-year capital development program for heritage building restoration and reconstruction at Fort York that will engage the public while respecting its status as Toronto’s birthplace and a National Historic Site. The approaching 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 and the Battle of York in April of 2013 provides a window of opportunity to advance this program in order to meet these key milestones.

“A revitalized Fort York is a key component of Toronto’s waterfront revitalization,” said Deputy Mayor Joe Pantalone, Councillor for Ward 19 Trinity-Spadina. “At over 40 acres in size, much of the site is either undeveloped or underdeveloped. Adding New Buildings is one aspect of a broader strategy that includes improving the accessibility and visibility of this tremendous cultural asset, and ensuring it evolves to meet the new and changing demands of the communities developing around it and the city as a whole.”

‘Fort York: Adding New Buildings’ builds on previous Fort York studies. Adopted in June 2003, the ‘Culture Plan for a Creative City’ outlined some of the Fort’s challenges. It noted that while Toronto is immensely fortunate to have its founding landscapes and architecture preserved at Fort York, the site needs significant investment if its possibilities are to be realized. ‘Fort York: Adding New Buildings’ is the next step towards realizing the site’s potential.

The study recommends the reconstruction of missing buildings and the construction of new buildings, including a visitor centre, to meet national and international standards for heritage conservation and interpretation. The cost of implementing ‘Fort York: Adding New Buildings’ is projected at $10,955,000 gross.

“This is an important decision to ensure a meaningful future for Fort York,” said Richard Shoichet, Chair, Fort York Museum Board. “As the Fort is a vital and telling piece of Toronto’s past, today’s decision is an important decision for all Torontonians. Few urban centres still have their founding landscape and architecture as Toronto does in Fort York. The Fort can connect people to the social, economic, and cultural issues that shaped the early history of Toronto and the beginnings of a distinct Canadian identity.”

For a copy of ‘Fort York: Adding New Buildings’ and information on Fort York, visit

Media contact:
David O’Hara, Museum Administrator, 416-392-6907 ext. 222



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