Toronto’s Eaton Centre to receive $76 million makeover

The Eaton Centre in Toronto is photographed on Thursday, March 1, 2018. Cadillac Fairview has updated its smartphone app to provide shoppers with additional tools to safely navigate its 19 shopping centres across Canada as they are allowed to re-open. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christopher Katsarov. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christopher Katsarov

The iconic Toronto Eaton Centre is set to receive a $76-million makeover.

In a press release issued Tuesday, Cadillac Fairview (CF) said it would be spending $60 million to refurbish the galleria skylight roof.

The release said the existing glass will be replaced with the latest materials and technologies to “improve energy efficiency while maintaining its classic design aesthetic.”

Wayne Barwise, CF’s executive vice-president, said the galleria’s original design was “inspired by the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II in Italy.”

He said it has “served as a distinguishing feature of the mall since the centre’s opening in 1977.”

“As custodians of this unique architectural element, our priority is to ensure the integrity of its design as we significantly enhance its functional performance,” Barwise said in a statement.

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According to CF, the project will be carried out in two phases.

The first phase will take place in mid-January in the south end of the mall, from Queen Street to Centre Court.

The second phase will begin in March of 2023, CF said.

According to the release, the work will be done by Zeidler Architecture Inc and Read Jones Crhistoffersen consulting engineers. Construction will be overseen by the EllisDon Corporation.

“As the original architects of the galleria, we’re honoured to play a continuing role in one of the city’s most iconic buildings,” David Collins, a partner at Zeidler Architecture Inc., said in the release.

He said the work will ensure the skylight roof is “fit-for-purpose and sustainable in the long term, all while retaining its original architectural splendor.”

According to the release, the Eaton Centre’s “Flight Stop” art installation will be “temporarily and carefully removed” by an art restoration company for “professional maintenance.”

CF said it will be placed in safe storage until it is re-installed.

The company said it will also be investing $17 million to improve shoppers’ movement and accessibility.

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CF said three new staircases will be added in the South Court and Urban Eatery.

What’s more, improvements will be made to elevators including installing a larger cab in an existing elevator to “better accommodate strollers and mobility scooters.”

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