CanWest eyeing Toronto

Looking to bring Canuck papers, TV ops under one roof

TORONTO — CanWest Global Communications is said to be in negotiations with the city of Toronto to build an ambitious C$200 million ($167.6 million) TV studio and newspaper complex on Toronto’s waterfront.

According to a Nov. 13 report in the Toronto Star, CanWest and the Toronto Economic Development Corp. (TEDCO) are working on a deal under which CanWest would lease city-owned land on Toronto’s waterfront to build a Toronto HQ that would bring the company’s Toronto newspaper and television operations under one roof.

Neither CanWest nor TEDCO officials could be reached for comment.

TEDCO prexy and CEO Jeffrey Steiner and CanWest Global spokesperson Geoff Elliott were both reported to have declined to comment on the rumors.

Winnipeg-based CanWest Global is Canada’s largest media company. It owns national web Global Television as well as the National Post Newspaper, whose Toronto offices are currently housed separately.

Federal, provincial and municipal governments put in place in 2001 a plan to revitalize a 46-kilometer stretch of industrial wasteland on Toronto’s waterfront. This is the largest proposal for the land to date.

Earlier this year Toronto Film Studios won a bid to build an $83.8-million film studio in the same area. TFS and TEDCO are in the process of negotiating the details of that development, Toronto Film Studios prexy Ken Ferguson told Daily Variety.

Toronto mayor David Miller is in Frankfurt, where he and a TEDCO delegation are visiting that city’s harbor redevelopment area to glean ideas for Toronto.

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