TORONTO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Daniels Corporation (“Daniels”), one of Canada's largest and preeminent builders and developers, today announced three new initiatives in Regent Park to drive diversity, equity, inclusion and create opportunities for local economic development. In collaboration with organizations including BlackNorth Initiative (“BNI”) and Akin Community Projects (“Akin”), these initiatives create opportunities for entrepreneurship and the arts in Daniels’ DuEast and Artworks Tower developments in Regent Park.
“We are thrilled to be working with amazing collaborators to bring incredible new arts and entrepreneurship opportunities to Regent Park. As community builders, we strive to leverage our business to help break down barriers faced by artists and entrepreneurs and provide them with access to spaces where they can work and thrive. We recognize that these types of initiatives create economic opportunities and promote diversity, equity and inclusion which ultimately result in vibrant communities,” said Heela Omarkhail, Vice President of Social Impact, The Daniels Corporation.
Work-Live Program in Collaboration with BlackNorth Initiative
Operated by Daniels in collaboration with BNI, Work-Live studios at DuEast Condominiums and Artworks Tower will create opportunities for Black-identifying artists and creatives to access the space at approximately 50 per cent of the market rate. The collaboration will support artists to help develop their practice, showcase their work and build relationships in the local community, while also addressing systemic barriers faced by Black artists in accessing housing, workspaces and economic opportunities. The initiative includes a Social Impact Exchange for artists in the Work-Live studios to participate in community initiatives and activations that meaningfully contribute to the Regent Park neighbourhood.
“We are looking forward to working with Daniels to create real social impact by incorporating arts and entrepreneurship into its new mixed-use developments in order to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion,” says Dahabo Ahmed-Omer, Executive Director of the BlackNorth Initiative. “This initiative offers emerging artists and changemakers from the Black community a unique opportunity to work and live in a creative and culturally vibrant community at reduced rental rates. The BlackNorth Initiative is proud to support and partner where both access and inclusion are priorities.”
From conception through to completion, every Daniels community is designed with social impact in mind and aims to provide opportunities for local artists and businesses to succeed. The DuEast mixed-use development is currently home to contemporary artist, Benny Bing. “Artists are the lifeblood of our community and finding an affordable place to live and create in Toronto is a huge challenge,” said Benny Bing, the inaugural artist participating in Daniels’ Work-Live program. “Daniels’ Work-Live studios provide artists with a space to create, grow and learn, a space to fully thrive at their truest, most full capacity. This initiative continues to show Daniels’ commitment and belief in the power of arts to enrich our lives and build community.”
Collaboration with Akin
Daniels has also announced a collaboration with Toronto-based arts organization, Akin, to provide artists with approximately 2,800 square feet of ground floor retail space at a special rate. Daniels and Akin are working closely to provide affordable artist studio and exhibition spaces, along with community programming and events which aim to support creative endeavors and entrepreneurial undertakings in Regent Park. Like Daniels, Akin is committed to the ongoing work of equity and inclusion.
“Akin is looking forward to deepening our relationship with the Regent Park community along with celebrating its deep history of artistic expression and creativity,” says Oliver Pauk, Director, Akin. “Our location at 658 Dundas Street East will be a creative workspace for 21 artists and a chance to create programming that brings together creatives from this neighbourhood.”
Daniels Entrepreneurship Hub
Inspired by the vision of local entrepreneurs, Daniels has designed the Daniels Entrepreneurship Hub as a resource that will provide workspace for emerging entrepreneurs from Regent Park to grow their businesses. Located in the office component of Daniels DuEast, the Hub will serve as a catalyst for small businesses and will promote knowledge-sharing and collaboration within the community.
“The Daniels Corporation has done a great job in supporting our community through positive development, all while maintaining our existing culture and values,” said Murwan Khogali Ali, Executive Director InfiniGuard Security Protections Inc. “As a community-serving organization, it is really fitting and exciting that we will be included in the Daniels Entrepreneurship Hub that will be located in our Regent Park community.”
About The Daniels Corporation
The Daniels Corporation (www.danielshomes.ca) is one of Canada's preeminent builders/developers, building more than 35,000 new homes across the Greater Toronto Area for over 38 years. Daniels is the developer of TIFF Bell Lightbox and the City of the Arts community on Toronto’s East Waterfront. Among its many initiatives, Daniels partnered with Toronto Community Housing to redevelop Phases 1, 2 and 3 of the Regent Park revitalization, a 69-acre community in the heart of Toronto. At the core of the project is both a physical and social re-connection of this once stigmatized neighbourhood to the broader City of Toronto. Daniels continues to play an important role in the Regent Park Community. Understanding that quality of life is created by much more than physical buildings, Daniels goes above and beyond to integrate building excellence with opportunities for social, cultural and economic well-being.