TORONTO (CelebrityAccess) — Operators of Toronto's Massey Hall & Roy Thomson Hall revealed the details of the second phase of a seven-year plan for major upgrades to the historic complex.
“We are extremely proud and excited to share these new Massey Hall Revitalization details,” said Deane Cameron, President & Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation. “With these improvements, our goal is to keep the original inspiration of Hart Massey alive by continuing to operate as an eternal gift for the people of Toronto and making the hall more accessible for patrons and artists alike.”
Part of the planned rehabbilitation of the venue includes the addition of a new, seven-story tower on the southern part of the complex. Included in the plans for the south tower is a new 500 capacity performance space on the fourth floor, offering a much-needed small music venue in the wake of recent closures in Toronto.
The main hall will also feature a smaller performance venue located in basement bar. Dubbed Centuries, the new performance space will be geared for intimate performances and industry showcases.
As well, the new south tower will also enhance patron access to the complex via passerelles, attached to the original Massey Hall structure and connecting to concourses with new sanitary facilities as well as food and beverage concessions.
“Because so many people want to live here (Toronto), and there are more developments, and rents are going up, it does put pressure on every independent business,” says Ward 15 Councillor Josh Colle, also chair of Toronto’s Music Industry Advisory Council. “Music venues face an added element: neighbourhoods that weren’t heavily populated are now becoming home to lots of condos and lots of new residents who might be more sensitive to what they perceive as noise.”
“I think most major cities around the world are finding that you want economic activity happening pretty much 24-7,” adds Colle. “It makes a main street healthier and safer to have activity at different hours, and not just shut down. It’s fitting that Massey would be the catalyst to make Yonge Street relevant again for music, because they’ve been there through everything.”