Artscape has come to an agreement with Toronto Lands Corporation (TLC), as agent for the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), to purchase the century-old inner city Shaw Street School and repurpose it as Artscape Shaw Street Centre, a centre for arts and community programming with a focus on youth. Artscape has signed a letter of intent with TLC, with an expected closing date of late summer 2010. Artscape has issued a Request for Expressions of Interest (REOI) for artists and non-profit arts and community organizations to identify their interest in purchase or rental opportunities at Artscape Shaw Street Centre.
The Shaw Street School was declared surplus to the educational needs of the Toronto District School Board in 2001. Located on Shaw Street north of Queen Street West, the building is in the heart of an area long associated with Toronto’s creative community and home to many artists.
“Artscape is thrilled to be leading the redevelopment of this project so brilliantly located in the heart of Toronto’s arts scene,” said Tim Jones, president and CEO of Artscape. “We are very grateful for the leadership of Toronto Lands Corporation, Toronto District School Board, City of Toronto and local community members who are helping to make this possible.”
Artscape Shaw Street Centre will include non-profit arts and community organizational space and artist studios. A number of the units will be sold to non-profit arts and community organizations and artists on a below-market non-residential condominium ownership program and the remainder will be rented as below-market non-residential work spaces. This mix will allow Artscape to continue to address the needs of the arts community for long-term affordable rental space while also offering some artists and non-profit organizations the opportunity to own their work space permanently and be a part of a vibrant artists’ community.