Heritage Canada Foundation's Corporate Prize to be awarded to Cityscape Holdings Inc. and Dundee Distillery (GP) Commercial Inc. for the rehabilitation of the Stone Distillery Building at Toronto's Gooderham and Worts Distillery District – Communiqué
Ottawa, ON July 31, 2006 - The Heritage Canada Foundation is pleased to announce that the 2006 Corporate Prize will be awarded to Cityscape Holdings Inc. and Dundee Distillery (GP) Commercial Inc. in recognition of their ambitious project to restore and rehabilitate the Stone Distillery Building at Toronto's Gooderham and Worts Distillery.
Founded in 1832 by William Gooderham and James Worts, the Gooderham and Worts Distillery was the largest of its kind in the British Empire. Now recognized as a national historic site, it is comprised of 44 brick and stone buildings representing the best-preserved collection of Victorian industrial architecture in North America. In late 2001, more than a decade after its demise as a distillery, Cityscape purchased the site with a vision of transforming it into a vibrant, pedestrian-only village dedicated to the arts, culture and entertainment.
Designed by architect David Roberts Sr. and erected in 1859-1861, the Stone Distillery Building is the centrepiece of the heritage district and the oldest surviving distillery structure in Canada. Successfully rehabilitating the building into new office and retail space involved extensive repair work to the exterior masonry, the interior timber framework, as well as the windows and doors. A new roof was added reintroducing the dormers previously removed in the 1950s. While preserving several of the distinctive architectural features, the entire building was upgraded to current building code requirements. Much of the original equipment used in the distilling process was restored and remains on view as a testament to the building's contribution to Canada's industrial heritage. The project received financial assistance from Parks Canada through the Commercial Heritage Property Incentive Fund.
The Heritage Canada Foundation applauds Cityscape Holdings Inc. and Dundee Distillery (GP) Commercial Inc., along with the numerous contributing architects and consultants, for demonstrating that the conservation of heritage buildings can be profitable and that Brownfield site development, although complex, can be a creative and rewarding experience. Because of their vision and dedication, the restored Distillery Heritage District has now become one of Toronto's top tourist destinations.
Cityscape Holdings Inc. and Dundee Distillery (GP) Commercial will be honoured at a special ceremony to be held at the Foundation's annual conference on Friday, October 13, 2006 at the historic Government Conference Centre (former Union Station) in Ottawa, Ontario.
The Heritage Canada Foundation's Corporate Prize is presented to any incorporated business, sole proprietorship or partnership that demonstrates outstanding stewardship of built heritage.