The World Urban Pavilion in Toronto’s Regent Park is a collaborative initiative between founding partners, Urban Economy Forum, UN-Habitat, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and The Daniels Corporation
TORONTO, Apr 21, 2022 – The doors opened today to the world’s first hub for in-person and virtual knowledge exchange on matters of accessible housing, green construction, urban equity and sustainable urban growth. Nestled in the heart of Toronto’s Regent Park, the World Urban Pavilion (the Pavilion) is a 4,000 square foot hub for innovation, exhibition and demonstration of the world of possibilities that places cities and towns at the heart of the Sustainable Development agenda.
The Pavilion is the culmination of a multi-year partnership between the Urban Economy Forum (UEF), UN-Habitat, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) and The Daniels Corporation (Daniels).
During the opening, Daniels announced a contribution of $3 million over five years to support the Pavilion. The Pavilion is now known as the World Urban Pavilion in Regent Park – Powered by Daniels. This commitment ensures the Pavilion remains an accessible and free resource for both local residents and the world’s champions of sustainable urbanization.
The World Urban Pavilion has been designed as a knowledge exchange hub where stakeholders from around the world can come together to share learnings and best practices on sustainable urban development. The Pavilion is located in Daniels’ DuEast mixed-use development on Dundas Street East, within a fully-accessible building in an open, gallery inspired space. Its unique design and multifunctional space provide opportunities for collaboration and ideas to blossom.
Visitors to the grand opening were treated to a viewing of the inaugural exhibition of the Pavilion, titled Canada Home. This is a multi-phase exhibition that will bring attention to Canadian innovation related to housing, communities, and sustainability. University of Toronto’s Infrastructure Institute at the School of Cities combined both conceptual and practical installations in this exhibition that depict models and approaches to mixed-use buildings.
The opening of the Pavilion also marks the launch of a global hub for UN-Habitat’s signature SDG Cities Initiative: a global endeavor to set more than 1,000 cities worldwide on track to achieve the 17 Global Goals that leave no one behind in the fight to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030.
Offering personalized consultations and a sheaf of planning and data collection tools to mayors, city managers, civil society networks and urban citizens, the SDG Cities Global Hub will also serve as a knowledge repository for cost-considering, contextually relevant sustainability-oriented initiatives to power equitable and inclusive urban regeneration and development.
To learn more about the Virtual Pavilion, please visit: https://www.worldurbanpavilion.org/virtual-pavilion
“The World Urban Pavilion will inspire and incubate the best new ideas in urban development and open doors to learning from each other and from other countries. Most importantly, it will lead us, as a country, towards a sustainable, inclusive future where everyone has a place to call home.” – The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Canadian Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion
“Bringing the World Urban Pavilion to Toronto is a demonstration of our city’s collective leadership in addressing housing challenges. There is no better spot than Regent Park to see this come to life as this mixed-use community has become a staple in our city and a global example of good city planning and development. I look forward to seeing the new ideas and solutions that will come out of this space and the collaborative work that will occur with other leaders and countries from around the world.” – John Tory, Mayor, City of Toronto
“It has been an incredible journey for the Urban Economy Forum and all our partners to establish the Pavilion as a global hub for sustainable urbanisation. Today the Pavilion has shown to the world how organisations, communities, and people can all come together to push forward on the SDGs. We are very excited to embark on this new chapter for the Pavilion with all our partners, as we collectively work for a better urban future for all.” – Reza Pourvaziry, Chair of Urban Economy Forum
“I’m delighted that the World Urban Pavilion has decided to adopt SDG Cities as a centerpiece of its programmatic work and will become a global hub. UN-Habitat can confidently state that the Pavilion has a strategic role in advancing the achievement of SDGs in cities worldwide, and in supporting innovative solutions to pertinent issues faced in cities. We are fully behind the success of the Pavilion.” – Rafael Tuts, Director of Global Solution of the UN-Habitat
“I’m excited about the World Urban Pavilion and its physical imprint on the neighbourhood. I’m just as excited about the programming that will take place there and the front-row seat we will have to see the great work around Sustainable Development Goals taking place in Canada and around the world.” – Romy Bowers, President & CEO of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
“Daniels is proud to be a founding partner of the World Urban Pavilion and thrilled to welcome the world to the vibrant Regent Park community. The Pavilion will showcase best practices in urban revitalization, with Regent Park providing a shining example of how multi-sector collaboration, with local resident voices at the centre, can re-imagine and transform challenged inner-city neighbourhoods into healthy, inclusive and sustainable communities.” – Mitchell Cohen, President & CEO of The Daniels Corporation
“The Regent Park community is excited about the launch of the World Urban Pavilion. The opportunity to learn from the many communities locally in Canada and globally on how cities and communities are being built better and how our own journey and philosophy to believe, begin and build can contribute to making the cities of the world a better place to call home.” – Ibrahim Afrah, Regent Park Community Representative & World Urban Pavilion Steering Committee Member
“The Pavilion offers a platform for communities like Regent Park to tell our stories, fosters solidarity across borders through knowledge-sharing and will allow us to come together to say it loud: ‘nothing about us without us.’ We in Regent Park have learned and know to be true, that participatory decision making with community members is essential to the success of revitalization and that it requires a willingness of those in power to share that power with residents with lived experience. There is a critical difference between being offered the empty ritual of participation and residents having real power to affect the changes happening in their own community.” – Marlene DeGenova, Regent Park Community Representative & World Urban Pavilion Steering Committee Member
About Our Partners
The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is Canada’s authority on housing. CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. For more information, visit our website or follow us on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.
To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit www.placetocallhome.ca.
The UN Human Settlements Programme, or UN-Habitat is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities and communities. UN-Habitat works to support countries to have access to reliable data and information on urban conditions and trends, and to efficiently monitor and report on progress toward achieving global agendas including the Sustainable Development Goals. UN-Habitat’s vision of “a better quality of life for all in an urbanizing world” is achieved through work with partners to build inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities and communities. UN-Habitat promotes urbanization as a positive transformative force for people and communities, reducing inequality, discrimination and poverty. Visit: https://unhabitat.org.
The Urban Economy Forum (www.ueforum.org) is an international non-profit organization that engages with city leaders to build capacities and global networks to realize the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), focusing on sustainable urbanism and lifestyle. The UEF’s annual conference is an international gathering of ministers, mayors, urban activists and planners, architects, academics, financiers, and civil society to raise awareness and exchange ideas and best practices on key topics pertaining to sustainable development. The 4th annual Urban Economy Forum will be held on October 3,4, and 5, 2022, with the overarching theme of Finance, Cities, and Sustainability.
The Daniels Corporation (www.danielshomes.ca) is one of Canada’s pre-eminent builders/developers, building more than 35,000 new homes across the Greater Toronto Area for over 38 years. Among its many initiatives, Daniels was chosen to partner with Toronto Community Housing to revitalize 53 of the 69 acres in Toronto’s Regent Park. Daniels is the developer of TIFF Bell Lightbox and the City of the Arts community on Toronto’s Eastern Waterfront. Understanding that quality of life is created by much more than physical buildings, Daniels goes above and beyond bricks and mortar to integrate building excellence with opportunities for social, cultural and economic well-being.
For further information:
Kaiser & Partners