Nathan Phillips Square

Nathan Phillips Square

Nathan Phillips Square

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Nathan Phillips Square is an urban plaza that forms the forecourt to Toronto City Hall, or New City Hall, at the intersection of Queen Street West and Bay Street, and named for Nathan Phillips, mayor of Toronto from 1955 to 1962. The square opened in 1965, and, as with the City Hall, the square was designed by architect Viljo Revell. The square is the site of concerts, art displays, a weekly farmers' market, the winter festival of lights, and other public events, including demonstrations.


The square, which sits atop one of the world's largest underground parking garages, is paved predominantly with two sizes of reinforced concrete slabs, amongst which sit a reflecting pool that serves as a skating rink in winter months, a food and skate rental kiosk, a peace garden, and the sculpture Three-Way Piece No. 2 (The Archer) by Henry Moore. Around the perimeter of the piazza runs an elevated concrete walkway, with a connection to the Sheraton Hotel across Queen Street, but which, due to budget limitations, presently remains closed for much of the year. Outside this walkway are treed lawns dotted with various other memorials and monuments, such as Oscar Nemon's statue of Sir Winston Churchill, and a Roman column.

Spanning the reflecting pool are three concrete arches; originally just an architectural feature and support for rink lighting, these were dedicated as the Freedom Arches in...
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