On November 5th, I held a public meeting at Casa da Madeira to ask the community whether to move forward on our proposal to integrate a new library into the TAS development project at 299 Campbell Ave (Dupont and Campbell). That night, our proposal received overwhelming support from the community, it received overwhelming support from the Library Board on November 18th, from Planning and Growth Management Committee on November 21st and yesterday it received Council approval.
Thanks to the Junction Triangle Library Expansion Committee, TAS Design Build, Library Staff and the Junction Triangle community for working together and making our area a better place to live, work and play.
This article is a follow up to Perth/Dupont library could make new home in 10,000 sqft space, which was posted after Planning and Growth Management Committee approved the item.
Toronto City Council approved a plan to build a new, 10,000 square foot library as part of a condominium project at Dupont Street and Campbell Avenue at its meeting Tuesday, Dec. 16.
“This was the last major hurdle in the approvals process,” said Junction Triangle Library Expansion Committee co-founder Kevin Putnam in a statement. “It’s an awesome development made possible by (Davenport) Councillor Ana Bailao. She has delivered something really great for our neighbourhood.”
Throughout the following six months, the condo developer, Tas, will complete the building’s final design and construction will begin when the project has been approximately 70 per cent sold.
“The library should open in about three years if all goes well,” Putnam said.
The library will move from its current location at 1589 Dupont St., just west of Perth Avenue, to the 10,000 square foot space at 299 Campbell Ave. Currently one of the smallest branches in Toronto, the Perth/Dupont library has been ranked as one of the city’s lowest circulation branches, however, there are waiting lists for almost every program. Those who frequent the library know it’s overcrowded. And so, as the city contemplated closing libraries in response to an independent consulting company’s report a few years ago, Junction Triangle residents rallied to create a public-private partnership to fund an expansion of their library.
“Residents came together and worked with the councillor, who worked with the developer,” said Putnam, crediting Bailao, who secured $1 million in Section 37 funding (money allocated for community use by developers), specifically from an impending condominium development on Lansdowne Avenue.
Mazyar Mortazavi, president and CEO of Tas, says it’s part of the company’s DNA to be “community builders” first.
Tas has agreed to sell the space to the library board for $1 million – even though it’s worth $3 million, Putnam said. And, that money has already been allocated through Section 37 funds. The remainder of the money needed to finish the interior will be made through the sale of the old library, said Putnam.