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Old June 10th, 2005, 05:07 PM   #1
Travis007
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Aga Khan Museum for Islamic Art and Culture & Ismaili Centre | U/C | Don Mills

From the Star:

Jun. 9, 2005. 01:00 AM

Ismaili Muslims reaching out
Religious centre, art and heritage museum set for city

The Aga Khan speaks to 70,000 devotees at CNE


HICHAM SAFIEDDINE
STAFF REPORTER

The Ismaili Muslim community plans to build a massive religious and cultural complex in east Toronto in a broader effort to reach out to other Canadians.

Ismailia's revered spiritual and temporal leader yesterday confirmed plans for multi-million-dollar facilities in this city and Ottawa, designed to build bridges of understanding between Muslims and other groups in this country.

The Aga Khan told the Toronto Star that his religious sect, an offshoot of Shiite Islam, will construct an Islamic art and heritage museum as well as a centre of worship on a site of almost seven hectares on Wynford Dr. near Eglinton Ave. and the Don Valley Parkway. It is expected to cost upwards of $200 million.

During a stop in Toronto on his trip to Canada this week, the Aga Khan also revealed plans for two centres in the nation's capital. A building on Sussex Dr. will house the Delegation of the Imamat, a body representing the Aga Kahn. The facility will provide information about the community's work, and house public events and educational programs.

Plans are also underway for a Global Centre for Pluralism designed to facilitate discussions about policies in place in Canada in the hope that countries in the developing world could adopt our philosophies in areas such as health, education and laws.

"Of all the modern industrialized societies, Canada is by far the most effective and by far the most successful in its pluralism, and therefore there was something very serious to learn from Canada and to try and move ... it into parts of the developing world," the Aga Khan said.

He said much of the work of the institutions will be in close collaboration with the Canadian International Development Agency and leading academic institutions in Canada.

The Aga Khan hopes Canada will help with development programs in the Muslim world.

The beloved leader was presented the insignia of Companion of the Order of Canada earlier this week for devoting his life to philanthropy.

He addressed an estimated 70,000 Ismailis who flocked from across North America yesterday to the Canadian National Exhibition for morning and afternoon sermons.

Many people who didn't get a chance to attend the service wept with joy as they caught a glimpse of the Aga Khan leaving the CNE grounds in his four-limousine motorcade.

"This is a very important event for Ismailis," said Wilma Jiwani, whose husband and three children travelled from Georgia.

"He is like what the Pope would be to Catholics," she added.

Jawed Ayam, 15, who came with his family from Whitby and was present at the sermon, said the imam is a source of inspiration for him.

"The talk was all about knowledge and how to seek knowledge, and it was very important to be here."
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Old June 10th, 2005, 05:39 PM   #2
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"will construct an Islamic art and heritage museum as well as a centre of worship on a site of almost seven hectares on Wynford Dr. near Eglinton Ave. and the Don Valley Parkway."

WTF? I had no idea there was even 7 hectares available in that area! Great news though.
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Old June 11th, 2005, 12:07 PM   #3
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What's the timeframe of construction, design, etc.?
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Old June 11th, 2005, 03:05 PM   #4
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Now, I'm not a permanent Toronto-resident, but I cannot see how this in will change the demography of the city. I think that it is great, that minorities and majorities have a place, where they can excercise their religion.

Thumbs up!
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Old June 11th, 2005, 05:42 PM   #5
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"WTF? I had no idea there was even 7 hectares available in that area! Great news though."

It's on the huge site of the old Bata headquarters (would be cool if this building was somehow retained)
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Last edited by Lucky 24; June 12th, 2005 at 11:18 PM.
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Old June 11th, 2005, 06:12 PM   #6
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Hmm, is this project going to get off the ground this time? Last time there was an article on this was in October 2002.

http://www.akdn.org/news/toronto_101002.html
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Old June 11th, 2005, 07:02 PM   #7
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Anyways, back to the topic of the thread. I'm really looking forward to seeing how this will look like. Hopefully they can have a mix of Western-Muslim architecture styles. If they make a very large Mosque in the middle, it would really stand out and could potentially look very attractive.
Other than that, I'll hold my thoughts until I see some pics

Last edited by Lucky 24; June 12th, 2005 at 11:18 PM.
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Old June 12th, 2005, 09:56 PM   #8
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As for the project...great news...but I don't care much for the location.

I hope it can result in some better development in the area.
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Old June 12th, 2005, 11:14 PM   #9
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This thread is getting way off topic. All posts regarding the racist behaviour will be deleted because 1) The material can easily offend someone 2) This is a thread regarding new development and I wouldn't want to delete the whole thing 3) This thread isn't to argue the issues of immigration in Toronto. The person who started this incident has been sent a warning. Once again, messages with racist undertones is not welcome on this forum. I will give this forumer the benefit of the doubt that he isn't a racist, but if it occurs again, there will be discipline. Toronto is one of the most diverse cities in the world...if you can't handle it's changing demographics, then you shouldn't be living here or conversing in an urban Toronto forum.

Last edited by Lucky 24; June 13th, 2005 at 12:15 AM.
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Old June 12th, 2005, 11:43 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buster
Oh, me so solly. Fank you fo let me in yo country. Fogiverness please. Me welfare person who look for country like Canada that take in peopo from countree that dumb for overpopulation. So solly Regan. You Knoh my peepo so well. Thank for explain to me cause me don't know nothing cause me visibo minoritee.
That's funny!
OK, something completely different:
1, Toronto - like many, many other cities - is culturally diverse (I'm tired of the myth that Toronto is somehow unique in being culturally diverse: see New York, London, and any city in the Western World with over 2 million people in it. I've never been to Cleveland, but I bet they have a China Town too, so let's stop going on and on about our diversity. It's fantastic, to be certain. And for a city of its size, Toronto is very diverse. But if you think that is unique to Toronto, you should travel more.)

2, Toronto is culturally diverse, and you have to handle that fact, or not live here. If you cannot handle crowds, don't; go to Tokyo. If you can't handle ethnic diversity, then don't come to Toronto. You have to, at the very least, 'deal' with it.

3, . It's 'live and let live'.' Some ethnic group wants to close down part of a major street for a weekend and do their thing, and have food, ethnic dancing and singing, etc., then wonderful! Great! You're welcome to come if you so please. And you're welcome to not come- as you see fit.

4. Toronto is not about ACCEPTING diversity, it's about TOLERATING it. How many blacks have you seen working in an Italian bakery? How many Indians have you seen working in a Rotti house? Are Italians being racist for employing only Italians... well.. sort of, and sort of not. So what? The point is that the Italians allow the Jamaicans to run their own business, etc. Are Jamaicans happy seeing Rotti to Greeks? No doubt. Do Greeks mind selling lamb to Poles? No... Toronto is full of ethnic enclaves, where people from one predominate ethnic group control the area to the exclusion of others. Is this a bad thing? Not at all. Is it racist? Maybe. Is it evidence of ethnic tolerance or ethnic acceptance? I its clear evidence of ethnic TOLERANCE, not ACCEPTANCE. If there was true acceptance, there would be more Jamaicans serving schnitzel.
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Old June 13th, 2005, 12:18 AM   #11
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isn't that same speech from South Park's "Death Camp of Tolerance"?
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Old June 13th, 2005, 01:47 AM   #12
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3, . It's 'live and let live'.' Some ethnic group wants to close down part of a major street for a weekend and do their thing, and have food, ethnic dancing and singing, etc., then wonderful! Great! You're welcome to come if you so please. And you're welcome to not come- as you see fit.

Very good points Are Be
One thing I hate though is how they never advertise these events. There was a Portuguese Week Party at Trinity/Bellwoods park this week. If I had'nt cut through the park I would've never known. Toronto should do a better job promoting ALL our ethnic events, not just the big ones (Caribana, Taste of the Danforth, etc).

Sorry Luck24, just had to sneak that part in!

Anyways, is there any timetable for when renderings for the museum will be available, when construction will start, and will it will be completed?
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Old June 15th, 2005, 10:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Are Be
That's funny!
OK, something completely different:
1, Toronto - like many, many other cities - is culturally diverse (I'm tired of the myth that Toronto is somehow unique in being culturally diverse: see New York, London, and any city in the Western World with over 2 million people in it. I've never been to Cleveland, but I bet they have a China Town too, so let's stop going on and on about our diversity. It's fantastic, to be certain. And for a city of its size, Toronto is very diverse. But if you think that is unique to Toronto, you should travel more.)


4. Toronto is not about ACCEPTING diversity, it's about TOLERATING it. How many blacks have you seen working in an Italian bakery? How many Indians have you seen working in a Rotti house? Are Italians being racist for employing only Italians... well.. sort of, and sort of not. So what? The point is that the Italians allow the Jamaicans to run their own business, etc. Are Jamaicans happy seeing Rotti to Greeks? No doubt. Do Greeks mind selling lamb to Poles? No... Toronto is full of ethnic enclaves, where people from one predominate ethnic group control the area to the exclusion of others. Is this a bad thing? Not at all. Is it racist? Maybe. Is it evidence of ethnic tolerance or ethnic acceptance? I its clear evidence of ethnic TOLERANCE, not ACCEPTANCE. If there was true acceptance, there would be more Jamaicans serving schnitzel.
Those are some bizzare examples. Toronto is very much about accepting diversity - sure, there are some negative elements, but overall, the city is a very accepting place.

In any case, I've seen all kinds of people working at all kinds of restaurants...Im not sure which Toronto you're living in.

You also seem to forget...there is a difference between just having a lot of different ethnic groups and accepting diversity. The latter describes Toronto.
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Old June 15th, 2005, 10:07 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by partybits
3, . It's 'live and let live'.' Some ethnic group wants to close down part of a major street for a weekend and do their thing, and have food, ethnic dancing and singing, etc., then wonderful! Great! You're welcome to come if you so please. And you're welcome to not come- as you see fit.

Very good points Are Be
One thing I hate though is how they never advertise these events. There was a Portuguese Week Party at Trinity/Bellwoods park this week. If I had'nt cut through the park I would've never known. Toronto should do a better job promoting ALL our ethnic events, not just the big ones (Caribana, Taste of the Danforth, etc).

Sorry Luck24, just had to sneak that part in!

Anyways, is there any timetable for when renderings for the museum will be available, when construction will start, and will it will be completed?

Well, the city isn't responsible, really, for promoting these events to us...the event organizers are. I think for most events, the city promotes as much as it is their responsibility too.


I hope a rendering for this comes out soon...it's been talked about for a long time now.
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Old June 16th, 2005, 03:07 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SD
Well, the city isn't responsible, really, for promoting these events to us...the event organizers are. I think for most events, the city promotes as much as it is their responsibility too.


I hope a rendering for this comes out soon...it's been talked about for a long time now.
Funny you should mention this. The promoters for this year's Brazillian festival were advertising primarily along Dundas West. I'm sure that no one outside of the community would have heard about this.

They're finally trying to expand to the greater community. Thank god! We could use a little more Brazilian flair in Toronto!
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Old June 16th, 2005, 05:41 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buster
Funny you should mention this. The promoters for this year's Brazillian festival were advertising primarily along Dundas West. I'm sure that no one outside of the community would have heard about this.

They're finally trying to expand to the greater community. Thank god! We could use a little more Brazilian flair in Toronto!
Exactly...a lot of these events don't promote themselves in the best way or make the most efficient use of their promotional budget...thus, they don't grow as fast as some other events.

Taste of the Danforth did a good job in that respect...they quickly grew into one of the larger festivals in the city.
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Old September 26th, 2005, 03:16 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron
Hmm, is this project going to get off the ground this time? Last time there was an article on this was in October 2002.
It's a complex project which changed half way. Initially, it was just the land at DVP and Eglinton, and the Museum part came in play only after acquiring the Bata building and land. The two lots together form a large piece of land. Recently, some folks put a wrench in the project as they wanted to make the 40 year old Bata building a heritage site, however, that was voted down at the North York Community Council meeting last week. I believe the designs, by world renouned architects Fumihiko Maki and Charles Correa, are almost ready. I'm hearing construction from 2006 to 2009.
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Old September 26th, 2005, 04:55 AM   #18
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I am so torn apart by this.... between my approval of multiculturalism and my dissaproval of religion in general.

That was just a personal insight... I'm delighted by such a project. Go Toronto!
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Old September 26th, 2005, 10:51 PM   #19
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I have the renderings in my hands RIGHT NOW. I need to get my scanner working and when i do, ill post it.
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Old September 29th, 2005, 07:23 PM   #20
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Still waiting for the renderings from iownyou14, however, both the Globe and the Star reported approval for the Aga Khan project at yesterday's council meeting.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servl...query=Aga+Khan
http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/Con...acodalogin=yes
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