City of Toronto Property Naming Policy
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1. Policy Statement
City properties are an important fabric of the community and their name contributes to creating a culture and identity within the City of Toronto.
The name of a City property will reflect the unique location, geography, or community of where the property is located or recognize the exceptional contributions of individuals or organizations to the local community, the City of Toronto, the Province of Ontario, or Canada.
This Policy establishes the criteria and process to name or rename a City property, including for naming a City property after an individual or organization.
This Policy does not apply to names of City properties in return for financial or in-kind contributions, memorials or commemorative events, sponsorships or the naming of City streets.
2.1. Duplicate refers to names that are identical or similar sounding in their entirety.
2.2. City refers to the City of Toronto.
2.3. City Property refers to any City owned real property or related assets, including, but not limited to, community centres, shelters, childcare centres, water treatment plants and parks. Additionally, unless otherwise stated in this Policy, any reference to City Property in this Policy includes Property Features.
2.4. Draft Plan of Subdivision is a legal document that shows the surveyed boundaries, location, size and streets of a proposed subdivision.
2.5. First Responders refers to Toronto Fire Services, Toronto Police Service, and Toronto Paramedic Services.
2.6. Honourific Naming is officially naming or renaming a City property on behalf of an individual, event or organization to recognize the significant positive contributions made by an individual or an organization to their local community, the City of Toronto, the Province of Ontario or Canada.
2.7. Naming is officially assigning a name to, or renaming, a City property or a property feature.
2.8. Office of Partnerships refers to the City of Toronto’s Office of Partnerships or its successor.
2.9. Property Features refers to significant amenities or assets within or on a City Property, including but not limited to, playgrounds, sports fields, gazebos, and ice pads.
2.10. Ravine shall have the meaning prescribed in Chapter 658, Ravine and Natural Feature Protection, of the Toronto Municipal Code.
2.11. Woodlands shall have the meaning prescribed in Section 658, Ravine and Natural Feature Protection, of the Toronto Municipal Code.
3. Criteria to Name or Rename a City Property
3.1. The City will consider proposals to name or rename a City property but is under no obligation to accept a proposed name.
3.2. The duration of the property name is at the sole discretion of the City and may be revoked or the property may be renamed.
3.3. Names of City Properties will portray a strong positive image of the City of Toronto, have geographic, historical, cultural, aboriginal or social significance to the location of the property, and may recognize significant contributions made by individuals or organizations to the community, the City of Toronto, the Province of Ontario or Canada.
3.4. Property names shall not impair the ability of First Responders to respond to emergencies or impair the City’s ability to deliver services.
3.5. City properties that have been named or renamed in the previous ten years will not be renamed.
3.6. The City will not rename its ravines, woodlands and other ecological features.
3.7. All costs involved in renaming a City property shall be the responsibility of the requestor(s).
3.8. Names of City properties shall not:
3.8.1. Result in, or be perceived to confer, any competitive advantage, benefit or preferential treatment or advertisement to the named party, or a development, product, service or a particular business;
3.8.2. Be or be perceived to be discriminatory or derogatory of race, colour, ethnic origin, gender identity or expression, sex, sexual orientation, creed, political affiliation, disability or other social factors;
3.8.3. Result in inappropriate abbreviations or acronyms;
3.8.4. Duplicate another named City Property;
3.8.5. Unduly detract from the character, integrity of the community or aesthetic quality of the property or unreasonable interference with its enjoyment or use;
3.8.6. Place the City in conflict with any agreements established in the acquisition or management of the property; and
3.8.7. Make a direct or indirect reference to recent events or recently deceased individuals, except where the event or the individual had a legacy or significant contributions to the City of Toronto. Names of recent events or recently deceased individual may be considered after two years.
3.9. Naming or renaming a City property, on behalf of an individual event or organization requires the written consent of the named party or the named party’s representative.
3.9.1. In circumstances where consent has not been received, despite reasonable efforts, the City, in absence of any refusal to provide consent or legal concerns, may approve the name if the applicant is able to demonstrate efforts to obtain consent to the satisfaction of the City.
3.10. The design and content of the signage for City properties must comply with the City Corporate Identity Program and the physical location of the sign shall be at determined by the City.
4. Naming New City Properties
4.1. The Division Head of the relevant City division shall propose up to five names in consultation with the Ward Councillor to name a new City property, including for a City property on a draft plan of a subdivision or a property acquired or developed by the City.
4.2. The Division Head shall consult with the public on the proposed names, except where the proposed property name is based on a location or a name of a street.
4.3 The Division Head will consult with aboriginal communities and adhere to appropriate aboriginal practices or protocols for proposed names of new City properties that portray aboriginal significance or contributions or propose to name a City property after an aboriginal individual, organization or event.
4.4. The Division Head will submit the top three names along with a recommended name for consideration by the relevant Community Council, (or City Council if it affects more than one Community Council or has Citywide significance), in accordance with Toronto Municipal Code Chapter 27, Council Procedures.
5. Renaming a City Property including Honourific Naming
5.1. All proposals for renaming a City property must be made using the City Property Naming Application process through the City of Toronto’s Office of Partnerships and at minimum is to include:
5.1.1. The proposed name and relevance to the City property;
5.1.2. Rationale for changing the name and significance of the proposed name including significant contributions to the community, City of Toronto, Province or Canada for proposals to name a City property on behalf of an individual or organization;
5.1.3. Documented support from the local community, including but not limited to petitions and support letters;
5.1.4. A map or illustration, including the address of the City property; and
5.1.5. Proposals to rename a City property that portrays aboriginal significance or contributions or proposals to rename a City property after an aboriginal individual, organization or event will require consultation with aboriginal communities and adherence to appropriate aboriginal practices or protocols.
5.2. The Division Head responsible for the property will consult with the local Ward Councillor, and may conduct additional public consultations to determine public support for the proposed renaming if required.
5.3. The Division Head responsible for the property will bring forward the proposed name(s) for consideration to the relevant Community Council, (or City Council if it affects more than one Community Council or has Citywide significance), in accordance with Toronto Municipal Code Chapter 27, Council Procedures.