TORONTO — A new, more durable Toronto sign, a popular attraction in the city, is being installed at Nathan Phillips Square.
The removal of the temporary sign, installation of the new sign and the wrap application took approximately one week to complete. The new sign will be easier to clean, waterproof and will have augmented lighting capacity and other creative features to support public engagement and interaction.
The city awarded a contract for the design, construction, installation and ongoing maintenance to Unit 11, a Toronto-based custom design and fabrication supplier for the television, film, entertainment and marketing industry.
The city will retain the sign’s maple leaf, which was installed in 2017 to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, and the medicine wheel, which was installed in 2018, in consultation with the Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre to honour National Indigenous Peoples Day.
The city is using reserve funds to pay for the new sign and existing operational budgets to cover the ongoing cost of maintenance and vinyl wraps, states a release. The cost of the design and construction is $490,000. Removal of the old sign, installation of the new sign, wraps, a three-year maintenance contract, contingency and optional enhancements bring the total cost to $761,842.
The original sign was installed as a temporary structure in July 2015 for the Toronto Pan American and Parapan American Games and although it was only built to last a few weeks, the city extended its presence on the square as it has become a landmark attracting residents and visitors who take selfies and group photos with it.
Now more than five years old, the original sign is showing significant wear and tear and ongoing repairs and enhancements have been required to keep it working. Rather than paying for further, ongoing repairs and maintenance of the temporary structure, in September 2019 the city began the process of procuring a new more durable sign.