Historic Toronto Power Generating Station being transformed into five-star hotel

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By Robin MacLennan

Ontario Construction Report staff writer

A three-stage public procurement process has been launched to restore and redevelop the Toronto Power Generating Station, with Pearle Hospitality named as the successful proponent.

The $200+ million redevelopment project will be funded entirely by private sector investment.

Pearle’s Ontario-based project team includes M.T. Planners and + VG Architects. The proposal submitted by Pearle outlines a $200 million “transformational private sector investment” that will restore the National Historic Site while creating an unparalleled visitor experience befitting of its location overlooking the iconic Canadian Horseshoe Falls.

“Toronto Power is a globally recognized landmark of Canadian architecture and industry that has stood as a central feature of the Niagara Falls landscape for over a century,”  April Jeffs, chair of the Niagara Parks Commission, said in December. “Overseeing its preservation and transformation from a dormant heritage building of national significance into a brand-new, one-of-a-kind visitor experience for the benefit of local residents and tourists alike, is the embodiment of what Niagara Parks stands for as an organization.

“This transformational investment will elevate the entire destination of Niagara Falls, solidifying its status as a global tourism icon for generations to come.”

The due diligence phase will include consultations, the development of heritage studies (Heritage Impact Assessment, Cultural Heritage Evaluation Report and Strategic Conservation Plan), environmental and archaeology assessments (where required) and contract negotiations.

Pearle Hospitality brings a depth of experience in the reimagining of notable heritage properties across the province into dynamic, location-defining experiences, such as the Elora Mill Hotel and Spa, the Cambridge Mill, and the Ancaster Mill, demonstrating a meticulous approach to restoration, sense of place and design.

Work will preserve a significant piece of Ontario and Canada’s history and provide a new purpose as an all-new visitor experience and demand generator for the Niagara region, Ontario and Canada.

The redevelopment plans prioritize public access with several indoor and outdoor public viewing areas including a museum, public art gallery, a range of culinary options, Niagara Falls’ first and only five-star boutique accommodation, event and programming space and much more. For more details on the redevelopment plans, please visit niagaraparks.com/torontopower.

Niagara Parks will negotiate a lease agreement with the proponent, similar to other existing agreements Niagara Parks currently holds with its partner tenants such as Niagara City Cruises and Niagara Adventure Excursions. Additionally, the redevelopment will be guided by the Niagara Parks Act (1885), Niagara Parks’ 10-year Strategic Plan (2018-28) and the Queen

“Our firm was founded with a vision to create landmark, state-of-the-art developments. As we work to redevelop the Toronto Power site, we’re looking forward to applying the best practices we’ve learned through our history of building, redeveloping and operating distinctive and world-class destination properties across Ontario,” said Brian McMullan, Director of Business Development and Spokesperson for Pearle Hospitality. “Our vision for this project will let visitors enjoy the Falls experience in exactly the type of breathtaking hospitality venue that one of Canada’s foremost natural wonders deserves.”

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