Northcrest and Canada Lands are working together with Downsview neighbours, Indigenous rights holders, and city-wide stakeholders to generate a shared vision and plan for over 500 acres at Downsview. This vision will prominently feature existing Downsview Park, which will remain at the heart of the community and will not be reduced in size.
A site map, including ownership and the location
of Downsview Park, which will remain intact
We’re at the beginning of a decades-long process of getting to know and reimagine this area of Toronto. This process is called “id8 Downsview,” because we know we need to “ideate” (or form ideas), incorporating the input of many people to ensure these lands meet diverse local needs.
These lands are in an area known today as “North York.” They are on the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit who signed Treaty 13 (1805). The area has also been the historic homeland of the Huron Wendat and Haudenosaunee people. Northcrest and Canada Lands are working together with the rights holders and want to honour these connections in the development.
We understand that Downsview has always been—and continues to be—an important place for many different communities, businesses, and cultures. The lands have dramatically evolved over time and will continue to transform in the years to come. We are committed to recognizing and building on a developing understanding of diverse local histories and on North York’s resilient spirit.
Current changes at Downsview are being propelled by a number of factors, including:
the departure of Bombardier and availability of the runway lands;
the major transit investments made on the TTC subway extension and GO expansion; and
the need to help accommodate the significant growth of people and jobs coming to Toronto.
Building on Shared Values & Local Priorities
As we reimagine these lands, our goal is to ensure that future development will strengthen the city and nearby neighbourhoods. We want to achieve connected, sustainable, resilient, vibrant, healthy, and complete communities. And we’re not the only ones.
The id8 Downsview process is designed to ensure that the future of Downsview is shaped by: Downsview locals, rights holders, and city-wide stakeholders; the City’s priorities and policies; and our own priorities as landowners. Our vision for these lands is informed by an alignment of these priorities.
A Collaborative Framework Plan
In the fall of 2021, these shared priorities and vision culminated in a proposal submitted to the City. This Framework Plan was the result of 16 months of engagement and informed by extensive feedback from Downsview locals, rights holders, and city-wide stakeholders. It was also shaped by a deep understanding of the local context.
The Framework Plan will guide the future development of these lands. It forms the basis of an application to the City for an Official Plan Amendment, and a future update to the Downsview Area Secondary Plan. Updating the Secondary Plan will help ensure that these lands will someday be the series of connected neighbourhoods that our participants have imagined.
As part of this update, the City launched a public engagement process called Update Downsview. More details can be found about the City-led process here.
Northcrest and Canada Lands are collaborating closely with City staff on their Update Downsview process. Meanwhile, the id8 Downsview process continues. We are still at the start of a decades-long process and still have a lot to learn from Downsview neighbours, rights holders, the City, and others.
Changes are Already Underway
Following participant feedback, we have already moved ahead on some projects:
We heard calls to animate these lands in the interim and the future with arts and culture projects that celebrate this place. In response, we developed XOXO Downsview, which brings people together through art and shines a light on the talent and potential of Downsview. Learn more here.
Participants have stressed how important well-paying jobs are to the future of Downsview. In response, in 2021, a world-class film & TV production studio was announced for Downsview, which includes a $200M investment and thousands of jobs. Read more here.
We are renewing our commitment to engage with rights holders, locals, and city-wide stakeholders now and in the future. We’ve detailed our renewed approach in our 2022-2023 engagement plan, available here.
Who are Northcrest and Canada Lands?
Northcrest Developments was established in 2018 as a wholly owned subsidiary of the Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments). PSP Investments is a federal Crown corporation which manages funds for the pension plans of the federal Public Service, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Canadian Armed Forces, and the Reserve Force. Northcrest is committed to delivering financial returns for its shareholder, PSP Investments, while generating public benefits.
Canada Lands Company specializes in real estate development and attractions management. Since 1995, it has enriched Canadian communities and experiences by embracing the full potential of the properties it owns and operates. Canada Lands is responsible for the operations of the CN Tower and Downsview Park in Toronto, the Old Port of Montréal, and the Montréal Science Centre. Canada Lands Company strives to enhance economic, social, and environmental value for Canadians.
Introducing the Northcrest and Canada Lands collaboration
Who is supporting Northcrest and Canada Lands?
Northcrest and Canada Lands have assembled an exceptional project team from Toronto and around the world to support the development of a framework for the future of Downsview. These consultants align in their shared interests in building sustainable, resilient, vibrant, healthy, and complete communities and in doing so through collaborative and transparent processes.
Together, we will be working closely with the public to ideate on solutions for this important opportunity that benefit the city, nearby neighbourhoods, and Canadians more generally. Through the process, you may get to meet some of the team. They include: