As expected, the Weston Cultural Hub cleared its final hurdle at the full meeting of Toronto City Council without amendment and the way is open for implementation. Here is another look at some of the financial juggling that makes the Hub possible:
All figures approximated for simplicity.
$2.1 million from selling the old GO parking lot
$3.3 million in Section 37 and similar contributions from the developer
0.54 million grants from the City Parks fund to Artscape
$3.9 million to Artscape from the Canada / Ontario affordable Housing Fund
$0.22 million to Artscape from waived development fees
$0.64 million from Affordable Housing to develop and adapt 6 affordable, accessible one-bedroom units in the rental building
Total: ~ $10 million.
Most of this money is to be directed towards the 26 live / work artists accommodations as well as the lease subsidy for the first 50 years. In addition, the 26 units will be exempted from property taxes.
The developer is being asked to provide a letter of credit for about $10 million that will be reduced as building progresses. If the developer is unable to get everything in place by July 2016 (permits etc. in preparation for construction) the City reserves the right to cancel the project or boost the funding.
$1.0 million from council has been set aside to pay for acquisitions costs (not the actual acquisition) and remediation of the vacant land at 14 John Street purchased to provide additional parking.
In all, the City did quite nicely as on the plus side they pulled in $2.1 million from the GO parking lot sale but are paying out $1 million for 14 John Street remediation costs plus whatever they paid for the expropriation of 14 John Street (how much did the City pay? – Does anyone know?) plus $1.1 million in grants.
We’ll keep readers posted of any developments as they are announced.
In response to a question by Dan Harris inquiring as to the whereabouts of a $1 or $1.1 million grant from Metrolinx, a quick search revealed a document from February 2012 that states,
“Metrolinx recently made a $1 million cash contribution to the City which will be used to develop and establish a Cultural/Creative Hub in Weston. The Social Development, Finance and Administration Division is directing a companion report to Executive Committee on February 13, 2012, in order to seek authority to receive the said funds.”
The million was awarded several months before the City’s TPA put the GO parking lot up for sale and may have been absorbed into general funds. If true, the million dollar contribution could mean that the City is actually making money on the Hub project.