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Newmarket setting its sights on becoming leading arts community, mayor says
Nov. 18, 2022

Newmarket is evolving into a community of the arts.

Mayor John Taylor shared the “emerging" and "bold" vision at the inaugural meeting of the 2022 to 2026 council term at the Old Town Hall Nov. 15.

“Newmarket is quickly emerging as a centre for artistic creation, entrepreneurialism and expression,” Taylor said.

“We shouldn’t see limits; we should only see opportunities. People already know something special is happening in Newmarket.”

The town recently renovated the Old Town Hall as a centre for the arts and more recently updated the NewRoads Centre for the Performing Arts.

Plans are moving ahead for the Mulock Park, where Mulock House will be home to exhibits from the Art Gallery of Ontario.

Newmarket has different arts groups and hosts many concerts and events such as Pride and Splash of Culture.

“I would like to suggest to you today that we can lean into these accomplishments,” Taylor said.

“We can become recognized as the town where vibrant downtown and urban energy feeds and thrives through and with the arts. If you live in the GTA and you want to live in a town that offers you music festivals, art shows, theatre and more, all having access to fast internet and a stunning boutique hotel, if you want to live somewhere that offers everything the city offers but in a smaller urban setting, Newmarket will be your first choice.”

Perhaps NewMakeIt, the only industrial and digital workshops, training and creative facility of its kind in York Region, could become a hub for the arts for creative entrepreneurs across the GTA at the old operations centre at the Fairgrounds, Taylor said.

He set the stage for what residents can expect during the upcoming term.

“The Mulock Park will be open. People in this room will be skating on the trail and visiting the Art Gallery of Ontario and walking through the 15 acres of trails and gardens,” he said.

“The Postmark Hotel will soon be open. You and I will be sitting on that rooftop enjoying a glass of wine before attending a concert at the Riverwalk (Commons) or the Old Town Hall.”

A new state-of-the-art tennis centre will be open in the future Shining Hill subdivision west of Yonge Street.

A new Inn from the Cold building will provide shelter and transitional housing with dignity.

A new affordable housing building at 62 Bayview Parkway will be within walking distance of a new urban park at the old Hollingsworth Arena site.

The town will be delivering on its anti-Black racism strategy and embracing diversity, Taylor said.

Southlake will evolve into a two-campus hospital.

Metrolinx will deliver all-day, two-way, 15-minute train GO Train service, and the Canadian Mental Health Association will establish a new mental health hub as a leading example of mental health care in Ontario.

In addition to Taylor’s speech, the inaugural meeting included blessings and reflections from faith leaders, Chippewas of Georgina Island member Lauri Hoeg, Imam Muhammad Sohaib, Rabbi Mendy Grossbaum and Rev. Linda Wheler; declarations of office by the Honourable Justice Peter Tetley; and speeches from councillors.