Infrastructure Canada

Infrastructure Canada
Ryerson University

Ryerson University
Loblaw Companies Limited

Loblaw Companies Limited
Canada's Economic Action Plan

Canada's Economic Action Plan

December 01, 2009 09:29 ET

Canada, Ryerson University and Loblaw Companies Proudly Join to Revitalize Historic Maple Leaf Gardens

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 1, 2009) - The Government of Canada and Ryerson University are partnering to transform part of Maple Leaf Gardens into a new sports and recreation facility, and provide long-lasting benefits to both Ryerson's students and the local community. The project will not only revitalize the historic Toronto landmark, but create local jobs in the short term to complete the redevelopment.

To make the announcement, the Honourable Jim Flaherty, Canada's Minister of Finance and the Honourable John Baird, Canada's Minister of Transport and Infrastructure, were joined by Mr. Sheldon Levy, President of Ryerson University and Mr. Galen G. Weston, Executive Chairman of Loblaw Companies Limited.

"On behalf of generations past and present, we are proud to be investing in the historic redevelopment of Maple Leaf Gardens," said Minister Flaherty. "This is a great project that will generate excitement across the GTA, and create jobs in the community. Through Canada's Economic Action Plan, our government is helping to revitalize this cherished landmark which will be a remarkable building once complete."

"A driving force of our infrastructure stimulus program is to work in cooperation with other partners and that is what this project represents," said Baird. "This partnership will galvanize the community, ensure local jobs are created, and inspire students and families to create new memories at the Gardens."

"This is more than a great day," said Mr. Levy. "It is a decisive moment in Ryerson's history, a true 'gamechanger' for our students and the return of Maple Leaf Gardens to Toronto. Everyone has worked together to make the redevelopment of the Gardens possible, beginning with the commitment of Ryerson's wonderful students; the outstanding partnership between Ryerson and Loblaw Companies Limited; and the confidence and contribution of the Government of Canada. We particularly thank Minister Flaherty and Minister Baird for their tremendous support of this very special project."

"When looking to develop Maple Leaf Gardens, it was crucial that we respected the heritage of the building while creating a facility that could be used by the community," said Mr. Weston. "We are thrilled to be working with Ryerson University to develop a joint retail and recreation facility so that Maple Leaf Gardens can once again become an integral part of Toronto."

The new Ryerson University Sports and Recreation Centre is a $60 million investment. The Government of Canada will set aside up to one-third of total eligible project costs, to a maximum federal contribution of $20 million. Ryerson University will provide $20 million through student fees and the final $20 million will be raised by Ryerson and Loblaw Companies Limited through a joint fundraising campaign, including a $5 million contribution from Loblaw Companies Limited.

This new, multi-functional athletic and recreational centre will supplement Ryerson University's current 20-year-old, athletic facility that has not kept up with the growth of the university. The new centre at Maple Leaf Gardens will add nearly 150,000 square feet of sports and recreation space on the upper floors of the building. It will be accessible by both Ryerson's students and the local community. Plans for the facility will include:

- An NHL-sized skating rink;

- A 4-lane, 200m running track;

- Basketball and volleyball courts with telescoping bleachers with more than 1,200 seats;

- Studios, a fitness centre, and a high performance gym;

- Academic space and more.

The remaining redevelopment of Maple Leaf Gardens will include Loblaw Companies Limited building a 70,000 square foot food store at street level with one level of underground parking to support that store, a standalone Joe Fresh Style studio store and other associated retail.

The Government of Canada introduced an Economic Action Plan this year to stimulate Canada's economy, boost consumer confidence, and create jobs during a global economic downturn. As part of this plan the Government and its partners have been making historic investments in infrastructure projects across the country that will create jobs now, and projects under Canada's Infrastructure Stimulus Fund are required to be completed by March 31, 2011.

IF THERE IS A DISCREPANCY BETWEEN ANY PRINTED VERSION AND THE ELECTRONIC VERSION OF THIS NEWS RELEASE, THE ELECTRONIC VERSION WILL PREVAIL.

TTY (Telecommunications device for the hearing impaired)

This news release is available online at: www.actionplan.gc.ca.



BACKGROUNDER

RYERSON UNIVERSITY SPORTS AND RECREATION CENTRE AT MAPLE LEAF GARDENS

The Ryerson University Sports and Recreation Centre at Maple Leaf Gardens project involves the revitalization and conversion of part of Maple Leaf Gardens to a new, multi-functional athletic and recreational centre. The new centre will be located on the upper floors of Maple Leaf Gardens, covering a space of nearly 150,000 square feet. It will supplement the university's current 20-year-old facility. Plans for the facility include: an NHL-sized skating rink; a 4-lane, 200-metre running track; basketball and volleyball courts with telescoping bleachers of more than 1,200 seats; studios; a fitness centre; a high performance gym; academic space; support facilities; food concessions; and recreational spaces.

The new facility will be accessible to Ryerson students as well as the community.

Other anticipated benefits of the project include the extension of the life of the building; preservation of the essential features of a historic and cultural property of national significance; sustainable energy-saving elements; revitalization of the neighbourhood; new customers to local restaurants; and shoppers to small, local retailers. In addition, reusing an existing building helps to keep Ryerson's environmental footprint small.

The Government of Canada is setting aside up to one-third of the total eligible project costs, to a maximum federal contribution of $20 million under the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund. Federal funding is being provided through the national, $4-billion Infrastructure Stimulus Fund (ISF) and is conditional on the project meeting all program requirements and the signing of a contribution agreement with Ryerson University.

Ryerson University will provide $20 million through student fees and the final $20 million will be raised by Ryerson and Loblaw Companies Limited through a joint fundraising campaign, including a $5 million contribution from Loblaw Companies Limited. The total cost of the Ryerson University project is estimated at $60 million.

The remaining redevelopment of Maple Leaf Gardens will include Loblaw Companies Limited building a 70,000 square foot food store at street level with one level of underground parking to support the store, a standalone Joe Fresh Style studio store and other associated retail.

Contact Information

  • Office of Canada's Transport and Infrastructure
    Minister
    Chris Day
    613-991-0700
    or
    Infrastructure Canada
    613-948-1148
    or
    Ryerson University
    Office of Public Affairs
    Janet Mowat
    416-979-5000 x7002
    Cell 416-816-7121
    jmowat@ryerson.ca
    or
    Karen Gumbs
    Senior Manager, Corporate Affairs
    905-459-2500 ext. 616041
    karen.gumbs@loblaw.ca