Popular Toronto rehearsal factory reportedly sold to C3 church

A popular rehearsal space on trendy Geary Avenue was sold to a controversial millennial-focused church group.

The Rehearsal Factory, a landmark in the arts community for its studio and improv space, sold its Geary location to C3 Church Toronto for $ 7.9 million, according to public property records.

The sale was first reported by Exclaim! magazine. Rehearsal Factory owner Chris Skinner told the magazine they are working on a lease to allow the studio to continue operating for “three to five years.”

The Star was unable to immediately reach Skinner or a C3 representative.

Rumors of a pending sale sparked concern in the arts community and area residents this summer after C3 Toronto posted online that it had purchased the site as its new home, claiming closing costs of $ 13.5 million while lobbying to raise. funds for your expenses.

The sale date in public documents appears as September 23, 2021, several months after Skinner told the Star that he had not yet accepted any offers for the site after an online listing, and months after the church claimed to have reached an agreement.

The church, on a page on its website that now appears to have been removed, said it planned to build a three-story multipurpose building with a 300-seat auditorium for worshipers, a space for children, a rehearsal studio, and in the future, a 1500 seat place of worship.

But current land use laws do not allow a place of worship to operate outside of that space and would require council approval to allow it, an arduous process for any landowner and a decision that cannot be appealed.

Since then, the church seems to have narrowed its vision, for now.

In a October brochurePlans now include the relocation of its headquarters, a “film and creativity studio” and a facility to distribute charitable packages to local organizations – uses that could fit in with existing rules. The brochure calls that vision “Phase 1” of construction.

The church is an offshoot of C3 Global, founded in Australia and known for its uplifting music, Instagram-friendly messages, and young, modern pastoral staff.

But he has faced criticism for his stance on same-sex marriage. A change.org petition launched this summer garnered more than 2,800 signatures against the organization moving into the ever-popular community, which is home to trendy bars, restaurants and galleries north of downtown.

The Rehearsal Factory’s Richmond Street site was also sold in August for $ 8.9 million to a holding company, land records show.

The company is still running out of the site on Geary, one on Front Street, one on Etobicoke, and two more in the GTA.

Jennifer Pagliaro is a Toronto reporter covering city hall and municipal politics for The Star. Follow her on Twitter: @jpags


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