A new gathering place for Toronto

The Bentway, formerly known as Project: Under Gardiner, is a unique and innovative public space that will transform the vacant and forgotten area underneath Toronto’s Gardiner Expressway into a new gathering place for our city’s growing population.

Stretching from Strachan Avenue to Bathurst Street, this 1.75 km trail and series of public spaces will knit together seven neighbourhoods – Exhibition Place, Liberty Village, Niagara, Fort York Neighbourhood, Bathurst Quay, Wellington Place and CityPlace – and become a gateway to the waterfront, while providing access to important attractions and destinations – from the Budweiser Stage to the Rogers Centre and Harbourfront Centre. This dynamic new urban corridor will activate the community with a continuous multi-use trail providing access to year-round activities and events, including gardens, a skating rink, recreational amenities, public markets, public art, special exhibitions, festivals, theatre and musical performances and more.

A new gathering place for Toronto

The Bentway, formerly known as Project: Under Gardiner, is a unique and innovative public space that will transform the vacant and forgotten area underneath Toronto’s Gardiner Expressway into a new gathering place for our city’s growing population.

Stretching from Strachan Avenue to Bathurst Street, this 1.75 km trail and series of public spaces will knit together seven neighbourhoods – Exhibition Place, Liberty Village, Niagara, Fort York Neighbourhood, Bathurst Quay, Wellington Place and CityPlace – and become a gateway to the waterfront, while providing access to important attractions and destinations – from the Budweiser Stage to the Rogers Centre and Harbourfront Centre. This dynamic new urban corridor will activate the community with a continuous multi-use trail providing access to year-round activities and events, including gardens, a skating rink, recreational amenities, public markets, public art, special exhibitions, festivals, theatre and musical performances and more.

 

The area surrounding The Bentway is rich with a layered history. The site follows the original shoreline of Lake Ontario, when it was an important junction for trade, and a hunting and a gathering place for First Nations peoples including the Haundenosaunee and the Anishinaabe, the Huron-Wendat and the Petun people, and most recently the Mississaugas of the New Credit.

 

It is considered the founding landscape of the City of Toronto as the Site of Fort York. It ushered in the great railway era of the 19th century and the industry it served. Currently, it is now in the heart of a series of new vertical neighbourhoods that are home to upwards of seventy thousand residents.

Responsive to this unique history and evolution, and the diverse urban and cultural character of Toronto, The Bentway will reconnect visitors with this distinctive place and transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. The Bentway is programmed, operated and managed by The Bentway Conservancy.

THE BENTWAY CONSERVANCY

The Bentway Conservancy is a new not-for-profit organization that maintains, operates and programs The Bentway. We provide administrative and operational leadership, ensuring that the space engages the surrounding community and city as a whole, offers a broad spectrum of events and programming, is safe and accessible, and is financially sustainable. Our organization is responsible for mapping out a schedule of year-round events, activities and opportunities for residents, community members and visitors. The Bentway Conservancy is a respectful steward of this unique public space, committed to accessibility and openness, while cultivating a culture of discovery and community participation. The Bentway Conservancy works in partnership with the City of Toronto, Fort York National Historic Site, the seven adjacent neighbouring communities and other stakeholders and partners across the City of Toronto and beyond.

PARTNERS

This project was made possible through the collaboration of a range of city-builders and experts, including the City of Toronto, Waterfront Toronto, the Judy and Wilmot Matthews Foundation, Ken Greenberg Consultants, PUBLIC WORK, Fort York National Historic Site and Artscape.