On June 23, Harbourfront Centre officially opened Ontario Square, a 53,000 square foot urban park space, located at the heart of Toronto’s central waterfront. Special guests Premier Kathleen Wynne and Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport Michael Chan unveiled Ontario Square, highlighting the partnership between Harbourfront Centre and the Government of Ontario which made this spectacular new waterfront square possible. The construction of Ontario Square was made possible by the generous contribution of the Province of Ontario through the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.
Premier Kathleen Wynne stated: “The province is committed to making sure the people of Toronto have a vibrant and accessible waterfront. Ontario Square at Harbourfront Centre will be enjoyed by millions of people from the GTA, across Ontario and around the world who visit the city each year.”
Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport Michael Chan remarked: “Ontario Square underscores our government’s commitment to creating marquee attractions that showcase our province to visitors and residents alike. A significant addition to Harbourfront Centre, Ontario Square will enhance one of our largest and most active cultural institutions helping to drive tourism, enhance our economy and give us a sense of pride, as a people and as a province.”
The square was designed by renowned landscape architecture firm Michael Van Valkenburgh and Associates, awarded the commission after an international competition to create this unique public space. Van Valkenburgh’s design was inspired by the Ontario Boreal Forest; featuring more than 500 quaking aspen trees and Ontario forest ground cover, with stone paving that emulates the ice floes in the harbour during the winter months.
Ontario Square also features a major three-storey reflective glass art piece by architect and artist James Carpenter which brings sunlight into the three levels of a new underground parking garage beneath the square. All elements of the square have been sourced within the province, with the stone paving provided by a local stone supplier, to ensure Ontario Square truly is a representation of the Province of Ontario.
For additional information and Harbourfront Centre event listings, the public may visit harbourfrontcentre.com or call the information hotline at 416-973-4000. Harbourfront Centre is located at 235 Queens Quay West in the heart of downtown Toronto’s waterfront.
About Harbourfront Centre:
Harbourfront Centre is a Canadian charity operating the 10 prime acres of Toronto's central waterfront as a free and open public site. We celebrate the multiplicities of cultures that comprise Canada and enliven the city through the creative imaginations of artists from across the country and around the globe. Harbourfront Centre attracts more than 17 million visits to its site each year to experience 4,000 diverse public events and activities. Harbourfront Centre receives operational support from the Government of Canada and the City of Toronto and program and capital funding from all levels of government, the private sector and individual donors.