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TCF Subway Station Revitalization Project Gets $1 Million Boost From Budd Sugarman Foundation

$1.75 Raised to Date for Museum Station Renovations

TORONTO, Feb. 16 /CNW/ - The Toronto Community Foundation (TCF) today announced it has received a gift of $1 million from the Budd Sugarman Foundation for TCF’s “Arts on Track” initiative to revitalize three Toronto subway stations.

“This generous donation from the Budd Sugarman Foundation adds tremendous momentum to the initiative of other seed funders. It shows their transformational vision for Toronto’s public transit, arts, environment and tourism,” said TCF President and CEO Anne Swarbrick.

“We are thrilled to support this project in Budd’s memory because it represents the perfect marriage of his two passions: the Arts and the City of Toronto,” said Gerald Soloway, Trustee of the Budd Sugarman Foundation. “It creates a gateway between key Toronto cultural institutions located above ground with the below ground platforms through which thousands of adults and children pass everyday.”

Mr. Sugarman was known as “the unofficial mayor of Yorkville” because of his efforts to preserve heritage buildings and architectural landmarks in the area. Upon his death a year and a half ago, Mr. Sugarman left a large portion of his estate to the Budd Sugarman Foundation. One of the directives given to its trustees was that he wished to make a significant contribution to the Arts and the City of Toronto.

TCF’s “Arts on Track” project will revitalize Museum, Osgoode and St. Patrick subway stations to boost cultural tourism and public transit in Toronto. The platform levels of the three subway stations will be renovated to provide transit riders with a visual experience linking them to the major cultural institutions in the area, such as the Royal Ontario Museum, Art Gallery of Ontario, Ontario College of Art and Design and the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, which will be the home of the National Ballet of Canada and the Canadian Opera Company.

“The Budd Sugarman Foundation donation shows that our city’s leaders share our vision of a stronger Toronto with a unique and world-class transit system linked to its outstanding cultural institutions,” said Mayor David Miller. “I encourage others to support this project, which represents an important partnership in the City of Toronto.”

Today’s donation brings the early commitments raised by TCF for the project to $1.75 million. An estimated $4.5 million is required to complete renovations at Museum Station, where work will begin later this year and be completed in 2007.

The Toronto Transit Commission has endorsed “Arts on Track” and provided $1.5 million towards the total cost of the initiative, as part of a matching program to help TCF leverage private contributions.

TCF is working with its philanthropic donors, governments, the cultural institutions and Toronto’s business community to gather the financial support to complete the project. Donations and gifts to support the “Arts on Track” project can be made through the Toronto Community Foundation.

“What impresses us is the role of the Toronto Community Foundation as the honest broker that creates an effective interface between private and public funders. TCF helps private philanthropists who want to make Toronto a better place, but who find it daunting to find a place to start,” said Jason Soloway, advisor to the Budd Sugarman Foundation, who works for the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies in New York.

“Toronto’s leaders in business, tourism, culture and public transit are invited to join us in support of this project. Its economic, cultural tourism and environmental impact will provide lasting benefit for the whole community,” Ms. Swarbrick said. “This project represents an investment in public spaces that will substantially improve Toronto’s quality of life.”

TCF is a charitable organization dedicated to making Toronto the best place to live, work, learn and grow. TCF helps philanthropic citizens and families establish endowment funds for charitable giving and identifies community opportunities to ensure that grants have the greatest impact on improving Toronto’s quality of life.

For further information: Paul Howard, Vice President, Communications & Marketing, Toronto Community Foundation, (416) 921-2035 ext. 232

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