Science Centre finds new home at reimagined Ontario Place

Therme Canada’s space at the Ontario Place redevelopment is seen here

Ontario’s Premier Doug Ford and Infrastructure Minister Kinga Surma revealed new renderings of the public spaces at the future site of Ontario Place during a news conference on Tuesday. The province also announced that the reimagined Ontario Place will house the Science Centre, featuring more than 40 acres of public space, including trails, parkland, picnic areas, lookout points, event spaces, and better access to beaches and swimming areas. The government showcased five public areas that will be open year-round and surround the previously announced private spa and music venue.

The William G. Davis trail, which has been up and running since 2017, is set to be extended under the government’s redevelopment plan, with stone terraces, piers, and lookout points added to the waterfront path. Brigantine Cove will have a canoe and kayak launch area, a new public boardwalk, and floating wetlands that will be open all year. The space will also feature a small beach and children’s play village.

Forum is a community-style space that will serve as the setting for markets, art festivals, and cultural gatherings. It will also have an all-season one-acre play fountain and splash pad.

The reimagined Budweiser Stage, which Live Nation currently operates on a seasonal basis

Marina, the public space dubbed by the province, will house waterside cafes, boating amenities, and cultural programming. The Mainland includes an improved transit and people mover system, which will connect Ontario Place to Exhibition Place, the terminal station of the future Ontario Line. Also planned for the Mainland space is an event and festival space that will be home to pavilions and an urban beach.

Nearly two years ago, the government announced its plans to reimagine the beloved space at Toronto’s waterfront. Private sector partners were picked to overhaul the space and add a new outdoor adventure park, massive indoor spa and water park, and a revitalized concert venue. Austrian resort developer Therme, and U.S.-based concert promoter Live Nation were tapped to scale up the project. Therme’s spa area will feature 12 acres of public space on the West Island, including a new public beach and aquatic habitat. Live Nation’s new space will house 9,000 covered seats and capacity for another 11,000 people on its lawn. New mechanized exterior walls will also allow it to host events in winter for the first time.

Toronto city planners released a critical report on the proposed redevelopment of Ontario Place, taking issue with the size of some of the private facilities and a five-storey underground garage. Developers are expected to deliver a resubmission package with changes following an environmental assessment, and the finalized designs will be released later

This community-style space will serve as the setting for markets, art festivals, and cultural gatherings

this year.

Surma said the reimagined Ontario Place was designed based on public feedback. The public wanted open public realm space with access to the water, and the reimagined Ontario Place will deliver on that promise. It will offer more than 43 acres of public space, larger than Trinity Bellwoods Park, with access to the water throughout the entire site.

The finalized designs will be released later this year, and the project is expected to be completed in the coming years.