The Bentway, a new public space designed by PUBLIC WORK and Ken Greenberg Consultants
located under the Gardiner Expressway, reimagines how Torontonians gather and experience
art and events downtown.
Made possible by an unprecedented public-private collaboration between the City of Toronto
and Judy and Wilmot Matthews, The Bentway is specifically designed for Toronto – a city where
culture grows in unexpected and extraordinary places. The Bentway works closely with
partners at the City of Toronto and Fort York National Historic Site to celebrate the unique
character of this area underneath the Gardiner Expressway. Through excellence in
stewardship, innovative programming, and world-class design, The Bentway seeks to engage
the vibrant and diverse communities in the surrounding area and draw visitors from around the
The first section to be developed, The Bentway Skate Trail, will officially open to the public on
Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 11am with special events all weekend.
Opening weekend festivities include performances from singer, songwriter and multiinstrumentalist
Charmie Deller and composer and performer Carmen Braden with her Black Ice
Sound music project; demonstrations of Ice Breaking, a unique hybrid of break dancing and
freestyle ice skating by the Toronto Ice Skate Group; and art installations, food and drink,
music throughout the day from the best of Toronto’s DJ scene, pop-up curling, and free
admission to Fort York National Historic Site.
The opening weekend will also host the Mayor’s Skate Party on Sunday, January 7 from 1-4pm
with Mayor Tory and members of Toronto City Council. Complimentary skate rentals and hot
chocolate will be available during the fun, family event.
The inaugural Winter Season at The Bentway will run from January 6 – mid-March, 2018
(weather permitting). Ongoing winter programming will include free Monday night skate
rentals; Beats and Bents Friday night skate parties with a rotating cast of DJs, and skate
instruction and DJ and Ice Breaking Workshops. A skating village, designed by + tongtong, will
be installed at The Bentway and will house the skate rental shop, warming stations and a
variety of seating options. On weekend evenings, skaters are invited to warm up in the
Strongbow Lounge, which will be serving up Strongbow Apple Ciders and other fine Molson
Coors products. A curated food truck program will serve hot food, warm and cold drinks, and
Throughout the Winter Season, The Bentway’s inaugural public art exhibition, “Constructions
of the Everyday,” will be on view. For over fifty years the Gardiner Expressway has been a
defining feature of Toronto’s urban landscape. In a radical act of renewal, The Bentway
reimagines this static structure and imbues it with renewed relevance for a contemporary city.
Embracing the spirit of transformation, the visual artists commissioned for “Constructions of
the Everyday” ask visitors to find new value and beauty in the structures of everyday life.
Additional seasonal programming will be announced at a later date. More information,
including hours is available at TheBentway.ca/skate-trail-opening.
The Bentway’s 2018 Winter Season is supported by the City of Toronto, the Ontario Cultural
Attractions Fund (an agency of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Sport), Billy Bishop
Toronto City Airport, Strongbow, and Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts.
Special thanks to 102.1 the Edge, the Ontario Tire Stewardship, Giant Containers, and Style
The Bentway is a unique and innovative public space that transforms 1.75km underneath
Toronto’s Gardiner Expressway, from Strachan Avenue to Bathurst Street, into a new gathering
place for our city’s growing population.
The initial phase, a 1.1km trail and series of public spaces, knits together seven local
neighbourhoods with over 70,000 residents, becoming a gateway to the waterfront, while
providing access to important attractions and destinations – from Fort York National Historic
Site, Ontario Place and Exhibition Place to Harbourfront Centre and the CN Tower. The Bentway
offers year-round activities and events, including gardens, a skating rink, recreational
amenities, public markets, public art, special exhibitions, festivals, theatre and musical
performances and more.
The Bentway is maintained, operated, and programmed by The Bentway Conservancy. The
project was made possible through the collaboration of a range of city-builders and experts,
including the City of Toronto, Waterfront Toronto, Judy and Wilmot Matthews, Ken Greenberg
Consultants, PUBLIC WORK, Fort York National Historic Site, and Artscape. The Bentway is a
proud member of the High Line Network, an international network of projects that transform
underutilized infrastructure into new urban landscapes.
For more information, please visit: