TORONTO — When the print issue of Canadian Lodging News hits desks it will be less than a month until the 2015 Toronto Pan Am/Parapan Am Games, which run from July 10 – 26 and Aug. 7 – 15, respectively.
About 7,600 athletes from 41 countries in the Americas and Caribbean will descend on the province, competing at more than 30 venues in 16 municipalities. With headquarters at the CIBC Pan/Parapan Am Athletes’ Village in downtown Toronto, there are beds for approximately 7,100 athletes, coaches and team officials for the Pan Am Games and 3,200 beds for the Parapan Am Games, according to the organizing committee, TO2015.
The Games will also operate five satellite accommodations for athletes and officials, to reduce travel time, in Hamilton at McMaster University; Niagara at Brock University; Alliston at Nottawasaga Resort; Barrie at Horseshoe Valley Resort; and in Minden at Pinestone Resort.
The Athletes’ Village is designed to be accessible and will incorporate a range of amenities including a fitness centre, a temporary dining hall, a hair salon, banking services, a coffee shop, a general store, a prosthetic and wheelchair repair centre, a polyclinic offering health care services and a multi-faith centre.
Funded by the province of Ontario, the Athletes’ Village sits on a redeveloped brownfield site in downtown Toronto next to the Don River.
Completed by Dundee Kilmer Developments on Feb. 20, the 14-hectare village will become a multi-use community following the Games and will include a market and affordable housing.
TO2015 is forecasting 10,000 athletes, coaches and officials will be fed at the Athletes Village during the Games, which includes preparing and serving 464,000 meals (see the infographic above for amounts of food required).
Accessibility at the games
With more than 1,600 para-athletes from 28 nations about to descend on Toronto for the Parapan Am Games, the city and surrounding areas have been working to ensure accessibility for all attendees.
“I fully believe that the TORONTO 2015 Parapan America Games will be historic,” International Paralympic Committee chief executive officer Xavier Gonzalez said in a statement. “The Games are accessible for all, not just for the athletes, but also for the spectators, with every single venue having accessible seating and benefitting from accessible transport links.”
According to the Games organizing committee TO2015, thousands of volunteers — the largest call in Canadian peacetime history — will be provided with accessibility training, developed with the support of the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario.
The course will happen through an online learning module and will give volunteers a better understanding of accessibility and the ability to properly support athletes, spectators and tourists of all abilities.
“This will result in over 23,000 Ontarians becoming trained to properly support athletes, spectators and tourists of all abilities,” Brigitte Marleau, senior advisor of media and communications for the ministry of economic development, employment and infrastructure said in an email.
Marleau added the online course will be made available post-games to businesses, organizations and committees who use volunteers for events and festivals.