Information session on April 23, 2-3:30 pm, Toronto City Hall
The Creative Co-Location Facilities Property Tax Subclass helps support the sustainability and growth of creative enterprises in Toronto. By incentivizing creative collaboration, arts accessibility and public space, it allows hubs of creative activity to thrive in the city. If your property meets the qualifying criteria, please contact Lori Martin for application forms. Application deadline is Tuesday, May 14.

Properties must be designated as a Creative Co-Location Facility by the City of Toronto to be included under the property tax subclass.

A property may apply for inclusion in the Creative Co-Location Facilities Property Tax Subclass in one of two categories: (1) tenant-based operating model, or (2) membership-based co-working model. A qualifying property must have as tenants creative enterprises that are charged a below market rent, that produce cultural goods and/or provide cultural services. Alternatively, a membership based co-working facility, which is a type of work space where self-employed individuals or small enterprises (the member) use a shared office or other physical work environment on a membership basis as opposed to a lease arrangement. A membership fee is the fee paid by said members to a building operator to access the space and any shared resources/services offered as a benefit of membership.

What is a Creative Enterprise?

Entities that produce cultural goods or services as defined by the Canadian Framework for Cultural Statistics.

For specifics, please see detailed eligibility criteria also City Council report.

A. Tenant-Based Operating Model

Minimum scale/physical space

The property must consist of a physical building (i.e. not a virtual network) with a minimum net rentable area of 10,000 square feet, or minimum net rentable area of 5,000 square feet where the property is owned by the City of Toronto or notwithstanding (B), houses more than 40 separate tenants that meet the definition of ‘Creative Enterprises’

Multiple tenants

The property must have a minimum of five (5) distinct, full-time tenants that meet the definition of “Creative Enterprises”.

Concentration of creative enterprises

A minimum of 51% of tenants in the building, in relation to the total number of tenants, must be Creative Enterprises. In addition, Creative Enterprise tenants must occupy a minimum of 51% of the property’s net rentable area.

Free programming and cultural activities for the public

A Creative Co-location Facility must offer at least twelve cultural programs that are offered free of charge to members of the public over the course of the calendar year, with no less than ten months of the year featuring such programs. Cultural programs are events, educational sessions or activities that relate to areas of activity described under the Framework for Cultural Statistics, which are:

  • Film-making workshops or the screening of films or video;
  • Authors readings or workshops related to book publishing;
  • Presentation of performing or visual arts;
  • Interpretation of cultural and natural heritage; and,
  • Live music presentation

B. Membership-Based Co-Working Facility

A co-working facility is a type of work space where self-employed individuals or small enterprises (the member) use a shared office or other physical work environment on a membership basis rather than a lease arrangement. A membership fee is the fee paid by said members to a building operator to access the space and any shared resources/services offered as a benefit of membership. A Qualifying Property is a property in which all of the following criteria are met:

Minimum scale/physical space

The property must consist of a physical building (i.e. not a virtual network) with a minimum work and common space area of 5,000 square feet.

Managed by incorporated not-for-profit organization

The property is managed by a building operator who is a not-for-profit organization incorporated under the laws of the Province of Ontario or the Government of Canada, with a functioning board of directors and a stated mandate to provide access to space and/or professional development services for the creative sector. The not-for-profit organization must have been incorporated for at least one (1) full year prior to making an application for designation of its space under the Subclass.

Concentration of creative enterprises

A minimum of 75% of members must be Creative Enterprises

Terms of co-working membership

Co-working memberships are offered for purchase by the building operator. As part of the terms of membership, the building operator must provide members with access to and use of the following shared resources during set facility operating hours (a minimum of 8 hours per day for at least 5 days per week); Work spaces (office and/or production); Meeting and/or conference spaces;  High-speed wireless internet access that meets minimum standards established by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC);   and Office equipment, such as photocopiers, telephones, or other equipment and technology.

Professional development services for creative enterprises

The non-profit building operator must offer a minimum of 25 professional development programs, services, and/or events to its members in a calendar year. Such programs could include workshops, training, events, mentorship and/or advisory support with a focus on advancing creative enterprises.

Note:  Eligible Portions of Property: Portions of the property that are accessible by members, including work space and common areas, are eligible for designation under the Subclass. Portions of the property occupied by the building operator for non-commercial activity are eligible for designation under the Subclass, up to a maximum of 10% of the total square footage of the property. Other portions of the property that are used for purposes other than co-working space and/or are not accessible by members are not eligible.

The property as a whole must meet the requirements of a qualifying property.

The portion of the qualifying property that is eligible for inclusion in the Creative Co-location Facilities property tax subclass is assessed, once the property is deemed eligible.

If they meet all the criteria, qualifying properties are then officially re-classified into the subclass via bylaw enacted by Toronto City Council. A re-assessed tax bill is issued by Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC).

Financial assistance from government programs may have tax implications for your business; it is recommended that advice be obtained from a qualified tax professional before applying.

Learn about the benefits of a Creative Co-Location Facilities Property Tax Subclass designation, the application process, and detailed eligibility criteria.

Tuesday April 23, 2-3:30 p.m.
Toronto City Hall (100 Queen Street West), Committee Room C

Contact Lori Martin, or call 416-392-5225