Just over one month after the announcement of 'Reclaim the Name'—a campaign to develop the official name for the over 10-acre 'Project: Under Gardiner'—and mere days since the first public meeting was announced, the project continues to move forward with yet another announcement. The latest development is the selection of a Naming Jury consisting of notable community builders, volunteers, cultural leaders and engaged citizens, tasked with selecting a short list of between 3 and 5 names from the 884 suggestions submitted during the campaign's first phase. The final candidates will then be subject to a public vote in May that will determine the final name of the project.
The Naming Jury members are:
- Jane Farrow (Chair): Director of Learning and Participation at MASS LBP, Community Organizer and founding director of Jane’s Walk
- Judy Matthews (Donor): Urban planner and philanthropist
- Sabina Ali: Chair, Thorncliffe Park Women’s Committee, Jane Jacobs Prize recipient
- Mahlikah Awe:ri Enml'ga't Saqama'sgw (The Woman Who Walks In The Light): Deputy Executive Director of the Toronto Centre for Community Learning & Development; Artistic Director of Red Slam Collective Indigenous HipHop Movement and TAC Cultural Leaders Lab Fellow.
- David Balzer: Editor-in-Chief, Canadian Art magazine
- Vass Bednar: Associate Director at the Martin Prosperity Institute
- George Elliot Clarke: Parliamentary Poet laureate, E.J. Pratt Professor of Canadian Literature, University of Toronto
- Mark Kingwell: Professor of Philosophy, University of Toronto
- Amee Lê: Arts manager and cultural producer with Mayworks Festival and imagineNATIVE
- Roberto Dante Martella: Owner of Grano restaurant, Jane Jacobs Prize recipient
- Melony Ward: Publisher, Canada’s History magazine
- Jesse Wente: Director of Film Programmes at TIFF
With the first phase of the Reclaim the Name campaign complete, the second phase will see members of the Naming Jury convene and select a shortlist. Scheduled for May, the third phase will involve a public vote conducted on the project website, after which the winning name will be presented to City Council for review before being officially adopted as the name of the project. The fourth and final phase will involve the confirmation of the name and the project's final logo, with information expected to be announced in late June or early July.
City Councillors Joe Cressy and Mike Layton both had positive words about the campaign, stressing how important public representation is in the design and planning stages of large-scale public spaces. “The name for this important new public space should reflect the diversity of voices and perspectives in Toronto,” said Ward 20 Councillor Joe Cressy. “I look forward to seeing which names this impressive jury of Torontonians will bring forward for a public vote.
Ward 19 Councillor Mike Layton echoed this praise; “The jury’s work is important in engaging residents of our city on this transformational project,” said Layton. “The many voices contributing to shaping Project: Under Gardiner will make this space all the better – and that includes a new name.”
We will be sure to return with updates as additional details emerge for this project. In the meanwhile, you can learn more by visiting the project's dataBase file, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum thread, or leave a comment using the space provided at the bottom of this page.
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