Community centre reopens after dramatic makeover

Near the corner of Birchmount Road and Sheppard Avenue, the newly renovated Stephen Leacock Community Centre towers over the rest of the nearby buildings.

But it is not just its outside appearance that makes it such an exciting addition to the community. Coun. Norm Kelly said he is pleased with the success of the renovations in Ward 40.

“I am thrilled to have this renewed and revitalized facility in our community,” Kelly said in a press release issued by the city of Toronto.

The new community centre contains:

  • A suspended oval track that is 700 metres long.
  • Two sports pads.
  • A pre-school centre.
  • A dance studio.
  • Several multi-purpose rooms.

Stephanie Song, a mother of two who frequently uses the pre-school centre, says she is excited for her children to have a new place to learn and play.

“[The centre] is a good place to share information and experiences and also for the kids to develop social skills with other kids,” Song said.

We’ve gone from not having any space to all this space

— John Kvitkovic

According to John Kvitkovic, community recreations coordinator for Wards 39 and 40, the centre has seen major improvements. The renovations have made the centre something special within the community.

“We’ve gone from not having any space to all this space,” Kvitkovic said. “It’s wildly successful. People come from Pickering to use this space.”

Kvitkovic said there is no other centre like this in Toronto and he is proud one of the first ones is in Scarborough.

“We’re very excited. It’s a happy space[…],” Kvitkovic said. “We’re very happy with the reaction. People come in here and they say ‘wow’, they just can’t believe it.”

The last phase of construction was completed on July 5 and the centre officially reopened on Nov. 19.

While Kvitkovic says many people have come to use the track already, he says there is still much success to be gained from the project.

“It’s still building. But probably by next year [it will be big],” he said.

The centre is open from 8 a.m. until midnight Monday through Fridays.