The City is partnering with Waterfront Toronto, Legacy Art Project Toronto and the Waterfront Business Improvement Area (BIA) to install public art at Toronto Music Garden, commemorating the legacy of Canadian athlete, humanitarian and activist Terry Fox.

  • Summer 2018: City Council project approval
  • 2018: National call for public art proposal submissions
  • Summer 2019: Community engagement
  • 2020 to Summer 2022: Project fundraising and art concept refinement
  • Summer to Fall 2022: Design development
  • Fall 2022 to Winter 2023: Contract document preparation and hire a construction team
  • Spring 2023: Construction starts
  • Fall 2023: Construction complete

The timeline is subject to change.

In summer 2018, City Council approved a memorial to Terry Fox, which was initiated by Legacy Art Project Toronto (LAPT) and subject to the City’s Public Art and Monuments Donations Policy. In spring 2022, City Council approved the project budget and directed the City to transfer funds to Waterfront Toronto to deliver the project on the City’s behalf. The project is being funded by Legacy Art Project Toronto (LAPT, a private citizen-led initiative) and their donors, with support from the City, the Waterfront Business Improvement Area (BIA) and a Federal grant. The art piece will be maintained by the City.

The project design titled, ‘We Are Shaped by the Obstacles We Face,’ was conceived by artist Jon Sasaki and landscape architect DTAH during a nationwide call for proposals by LAPT in collaboration with Art+Public. The design will be located in the open green space east of Toronto Music Garden, near Queens Quay West. The south end of the existing lawn area will be preserved in the final design for the space.

Visit the Project Updates section for information about the art competition selection process and proposed art installation for the Toronto Music Garden.


September 2022

Design Review Panel Meeting

On September 28, 2022, the design team and Legacy Art Project Toronto met to discuss the detailed design of the public art piece. The purpose of the meeting was to collect feedback from the art competition panel, which will be incorporated into the final design.

February 2019

Art Selected

In February 2019, the art competition panel, comprised of art and design professionals, unanimously selected the public art piece titled “We Are Shaped by the Obstacles We Face,” designed by Toronto-based interdisciplinary artist Jon Sasaki with DTAH. The permanent, integrated, and architectural art installation aims to convey the optimism and courage Terry Fox showed throughout the Marathon of Hope in 1980, in an experiential way.

The project consists of the following public realm components:

  • Artwork with sculpted granite stone slabs and a bronze statue with foundations.
  • Winding asphalt pathway leading one through an experiential journey of the art piece.
  • Hard landscaping (manmade features incorporated into landscape design), including paving, edging (creates clean lines between planting beds and other areas), seating, benches and low concrete walls.
  • Soft landscaping (using living plant materials like trees and shrubs), including irrigation, soil, grass, plantings, and trees.

January 2019

Open House

On January 29, 2019, an Open House took place at Fort York Visitor Centre for the public to view the five shortlisted public art design proposals. The public had the opportunity to leave comments and vote for their favourite proposal. Jon Sasaki with DTAH’s proposal had the most votes and positive feedback.


Art Competition Launch

A national call for public art proposal submissions was launched. The competition included top Canadian artists and was judged by a panel of art and design professionals and community representatives.

This project is funded in part by the Government of Canada through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).

Government of Ontario logo with the following text: Funded by: Federal Economica Development Agency for Southern Ontario. Finance par: Agence federale de developpement economique pour le Sud de l'Ontarion.