Media Releases

University of Toronto to proceed with back campus fields project

June 12, 2013

TORONTO, ON – The Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to is very pleased that Toron­to city coun­cil­lors re-affirmed the city’s com­mit­ment to renewed fields on the university’s his­toric back cam­pus. City coun­cil vot­ed in favour of the University’s plan to pro­ceed with the project, which will involve cre­at­ing two arti­fi­cial turf fields.

The fields will pro­vide a venue for field hock­ey and para-sports dur­ing the 2015 Pan/­Para­pan-Am games. More impor­tant­ly for the uni­ver­si­ty, they will resolve a long-stand­ing prob­lem of lim­it­ed uti­liza­tion of the back cam­pus play­ing fields, and allow increased access for sport and recre­ation for stu­dents and the entire uni­ver­si­ty com­mu­ni­ty.  Con­struc­tion on the fields will begin before the end of the month.

“The debate over the back cam­pus has been waged with pas­sion on both sides,” said David Nay­lor, Pres­i­dent of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to.  “The Uni­ver­si­ty and its part­ners made a com­mit­ment to sup­port the Pan/­Para­pan-Amer­i­can Games with this facil­i­ty. The City has now re-con­firmed its com­mit­ment, and we’re grate­ful. We look for­ward both to new oppor­tu­ni­ties for our intra­mur­al and oth­er recre­ation­al ath­letes and, of course, to help­ing host the Toron­to 2015 events.”

While the motion vot­ed on today at city coun­cil was a last-minute effort to stop the project, Vice Pres­i­dent Scott Mabury stressed that the Uni­ver­si­ty con­sult­ed wide­ly and first pub­licly sur­faced the pro­pos­al for the facil­i­ty back in 2009.  He added: “We know that emo­tions ran high on this issue, and it’s unfor­tu­nate that so much mis­in­for­ma­tion was cir­cu­lat­ed. All the more rea­son for us to keep com­mu­ni­cat­ing, and to keep look­ing at this new instal­la­tion from every angle once it’s installed.”

Nay­lor thanked stu­dents, com­mu­ni­ty mem­bers, fac­ul­ty, staff and its part­ners at Toron­to 2015, for mak­ing the project a real­i­ty and for their strong sup­port dur­ing the debate lead­ing up to today’s city coun­cil deci­sion.

“With­out the enthu­si­asm of those who rec­og­nize the val­ue these new fields have for the uni­ver­si­ty and the com­mu­ni­ty, this project would not have been pos­si­ble,” he said.  “We are hap­py to con­tin­ue to work with the city and all our part­ners on all aspects of this project.”

Nay­lor also not­ed that the Uni­ver­si­ty is already engaged in plan­ning to ensure the preser­va­tion of the her­itage of the entire St. George cam­pus, includ­ing the back cam­pus. That plan­ning will con­tin­ue with the City as a full part­ner.


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Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to Media Rela­tions