Booking Nathan Phillips Square

ExpandBooking Procedures


Applicants requesting permission to use Nathan Phillips Square to hold an event are required to meet ALL of the following criteria to have their application considered:

a)  Be a registered non-profit or charitable organization.

b)  Provide a service or benefit to residents of the City of Toronto.

c)  Have the event open to the general public and free of charge.

d)  Meet the requirements of the Non-Discrimination Policy, Save and Hold Harmless Clause and Consent to Release Personal Information.


Provided you meet the Eligibility Criteria above, commencing on October 1st in the year prior to your event, send an email to with the following information:

  • Date and time of your event
  • Name of  non-profit or charitable organization
  • Name and description of the event

Once your request is reviewed and if the date requested is available, a "HOLD" will be placed. If the requested date is unavailable, an alternative date will be offered based on availability.

Once the HOLD has been placed, the Event Support Supervisor will follow-up with the applicant and you will be requested to complete the application.


The next step is to submit a Application Form.  Applications MUST BE received a minimum of 12 weeks prior to the requested date.  Once your application is approved, a 'CONDITIONAL APPROVAL' will be granted and you can begin planning your event and working with the Event Support Supervisor to coordinate your event production schedule.

Tentative booking of a specific date does not guarantee permission to hold your event.  Your event is confirmed only when you receive a Permit from City of Toronto, Facilities Management, which can only be issued after all information is received by the Event Support Supervisor.

If for any reason you need to cancel your event, a written notice of cancellation must be sent to the Event Support Supervisor no later than 14 business days before your scheduled event.

Important Conditions

The permit is for the use of Nathan Phillips Square only. The use of Toronto City Hall, assembly area, greenrooms, and dressing rooms located under the stage can be booked upon request.

Due to the number of demands for the use of Nathan Phillips Square, no organization is permitted more than three (3) events per year.

The desecration of flags or other national symbols is prohibited.

Any action which could incite violence is prohibited.

The City of Toronto reserves the right to refuse an event if all required information is not provided by the event organizer when requested; if the Square is physically unfit for use due to inclement weather or emergency maintenance; and in the event of a labour disruption or emergency situation.


Starting on January 1, 2016, all events on Nathan Phillips Square are charged staff and service fees.  Fees are also charged for audio equipment and sound technicians. In addition a refundable damage deposit is collected.  Following receipt of a complete application and sound information, a detailed quote will be sent.  Payment is due prior to your event.  Within 60 days following your event, your event will be reconciled and your deposit, minus any outstanding fees will be returned.


After hours fees will be charged for all events starting January 1, 2016. Fees are subject to change without notice.

Cancellation: Please be advised that notice of event revisions or cancellation less than 48 business hours (Monday to Friday from 8:30 am to  4:30 pm) prior to the event date will result in full charge backs for all staff hours and any operating costs.

Civic Centres Staffing Costs

Services Fee Time
Electrician $153 + tax Minimum 4 hours
Custodial $45.90 + tax Minimum 4 hours
Security $66.30 + tax Minimum 4 hours
Fore Person $76.50 + tax Minimum 4 hours
Regular Set up $45.90 + tax Minimum 4 hours
 Building Operator  $51.00 + tax    Minimum 4 hours


Damage/Security Fees (subject to change)


Number of Attendees




Over 100 less than 1000 attendees


8 weeks prior to the event


Over 1001 less than 5000


8 weeks prior to the event


Over 5001


8 weeks prior to the event


Events with alcohol regardless of attendance


8 weeks prior to the event

Need Additional Information About Booking Nathan Phillips Square?

Shalini Srivastava

Toronto City Hall, 9th Floor, East Tower


Before filling out your application, please review these Guidelines and note those that apply to your event. If you disregard any of these Guidelines, permission will immediately be withdrawn for the use, and your event will be brought to an end. This will also jeopardize future requests.


 To sell alcoholic beverages you must:

  • donate all profits to a non-profit or charitable organization
    • obtain a Special Occasion Permit from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario
    • apply to City of Toronto Clerks Office for a letter acknowledging your event as an “Event of Municipal Significance  (416) 392-7033
      • comply with the City of Toronto Municipal Alcohol Policy
      • provide proof of Server Intervention or Smart Serve Program trained bartenders
      • provide identifiable floor monitors in the ratio of one per 100 participants
      • obtain Toronto City Council approval (the Event Support Supervisor will assist with this process)
      • consult with Corporate Security regarding security arrangements for entrance/exit to the designated alcohol area
      • obtain a minimum $5,000,000 Certificate of Insurance for comprehensive liability coverage for your event.  (See Insurance section of these Guidelines)

Please note the following:

  • There is a serving limit of two drinks or two tickets per person at any one time.  Food (not snacks) must be available for sale in your designated alcohol area, and 35% of your alcohol menu must include low alcohol and non-alcohol drink choices.

You must post the following signs in a prominent location at your "beer or wine garden":

  • sign naming the Special Occasion Permit holder


The City of Toronto supports the goal of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and encourages all event planners to make their events as accessible as possible to all members of the public.


Exotic animals are not permitted.                       


Amplification of sound must be approved in advance and operated at sound levels outlined in the Chapter 591 “Noise” of the Municipal Code and Guidelines.

Weekdays: Amplification is permitted 12:30 PM – 1:30 PM and is not to exceed 75dBA, and from 4:30 PM – 10:00 PM and is not to exceed 85 dBA.

Weekends:  9:00 AM – 10:00 PM and is not to exceed 85 dBA.

In order to ensure the highest standards of presentation, professionalism and safety, the Nathan Phillips Square works with an exclusive audio supplier 'Westbury National'.

Audio Equipment:

Option 1: PA1: A complete sound system adequate for up to a six-piece professional band, including monitors and mixers is available on site. The applicant is responsible for hiring (at a fee) the sound technician through Event Support Supervisor.

Option 2: PA2: A public announcement system with a cd / tape deck and six microphones is available for no cost. The applicant can operate this system.

Option 3: You may bring your own sound system (upon approval). Please provide the name and telephone number of the person/company providing the system. The applicant is responsible for hiring (at a fee) the sound technician through Event Support Supervisor.


Helium-filled balloons are prohibited. Balloons for distribution to the public must be air-filled. Releasing balloons is prohibited.


Only propane barbecues are permitted. One fire extinguisher per barbecue unit is mandatory. Barbecues must be enclosed within barricades. All concrete slabs in food service area must be covered to prevent ground staining. Fees may be charged for any clean up required following the event.


Activities which degrade men or women through sexual stereotyping, or exploit the bodies of or contests men, women, boys or girls solely for the purpose of attracting attention, are not permitted.


Candles are prohibited on the Square. Safety light sticks are an acceptable alternative.


The event organizer/applicant is responsible for all costs related to an event and is liable for any loss or damage to City of Toronto property or equipment.  Events will be charged a damage/security deposit fee based on the following criteria:

  • Size of the event.
  • Number of days the event will take place.
  • Infrastructure /set up of the event.

Security deposit, when required must be paid 8 weeks prior to the event start date.

Damage/Security Fees (subject to change):


Number of Attendees




Over 100 less than 1000 attendees


8 weeks prior to the event


Over 1001 less than 5000


8 weeks prior to the event


Over 5001


8 weeks prior to the event


Events with alcohol regardless of attendance


8 weeks prior to the event

Following the event, the property will be inspected by the facility representatives. If damage is accessed, the applicant will be notified and cost of repair for any damages sustained will be subtracted from the deposit fee.  Additional fees may be required.  If there is no damage, or a balance, this amount will be refunded within 60 days following the completion of the event.


A limited number of 15 amp outlets are available at within the Square. Additional power can be requested on the application form. All electrical requirements and plans must be submitted to the Event Support Supervisor, at least 10 weeks prior to the event for review. An Electrical Safety Authority inspection may be required and if so a copy of the application must be provided to the Event Support Supervisor.

After hours fees (see Staffing Fees fee section) will be charged.


All events will be required to submit an Emergency Action Plan along with Risk Assessment to the Office of Emergency Management: There are different requirements based on the size, scope and activities of your event.


When a City of Toronto Extreme Heat Alert is called, event organizers must make announcements identifying existing water stations and shade locations.  All permit holders are asked to remind participants of the cooling options available to them.


Any form of open flame is prohibited.


Based on your event and risk assessment, medical and/or first aid coverage is recommended. Toronto Paramedic Services or private medical service provider can be contacted to supply first aid at your event. 


Please address requests for flag raisings on the podium roof to: Chief of Protocol, Protocol Office, 2nd Floor West, City Hall,Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N2.  (416) 392-6745. 


Selling food is permitted only in support of non-profit or charitable organizations and with approval from Toronto Public Health. Applicants and their food vendors must complete “Temporary Food Establishment” forms and returned to the Event Support Supervisor at least 12 weeks prior to the event.

Please avoid the use of Styrofoam or other environmentally hazardous products. All concrete slabs in food service area must be covered to prevent staining.  Please use recycling bins provided by the City of Toronto.                                


Selling items is permitted only in support of non-profit or charitable organizations.  Samples or sketches of all proposed items must be submitted with your Application.  Selling or distributing items requires written authorization on the Permit and will be restricted to designated tables.  Soliciting for donations is prohibited.


A certificate of insurance for General Comprehensive Liability Insurance coverage, indicating a minimum of $2,000,000 coverage ($5,000,000 if serving alcohol) per occurrence is required. The City of Toronto named as an additional insured in a cross liability/severability clause. Please send the Certificate of Insurance to: Nathan Phillips Square, Event Support Supervisor, Film & Entertainment Industries, 9th Floor East, City Hall, Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N2 or via email:

Please note: In some cases the limit of the liability per occurrence may increase depending on the event design.


Please address letters of invitation for the Mayor to: His Worship Mayor John Tory, City of Toronto, 2nd Floor, City Hall, Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N2. Letters of invitation to City Councillors may also be sent to the above address. Please mail a copy to the attention of the Event Support Supervisor.


Megaphones are prohibited.


Operations set up or take down staff are available to assist event organizers during business hours only.  Organizers are encouraged to schedule their set up/take down from:

Monday to Friday: 7:30 am - 3:30 pm

Set up happening after business hours, on weekends and statutory holidays may be permitted in consultation with Event Support Supervisor and will occur staffing fees (see Staffing Fee section).


If your event includes a parade on a street, please contact Toronto Police at (416) 808-5049 to complete a “Notice of Intent to Hold a Parade”.


Entering or placing objects in the Reflecting Pool/Skating Rink is prohibited. Exclusive use of the rink for events that prevent public access is not permitted.  No commercial advertising of any kind is permitted in the pool or on the rink surface.


Requests for proclamations should be addressed to: Mayor's Office, City of Toronto, 2nd Floor, City Hall, Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N2.  A copy of this request should also be sent to the Event Support Supervisor:


Distribution or the sales of still bottled water is prohibited.  As an alternative, a water trailer can be booked by the applicant.


Is available for performances on the west side of the Nathan Phillips Square. The stage has a Main Stage (including ramps), and an Upper Stage (including steps).


To obtain a lottery licence, please contact the Lottery Licences Office in the City Clerk's Office,


All printed materials to be sold, distributed or displayed are subject to prior approval.  Please enclose samples or sketches of all proposed items with your Application. 

Selling or distributing t-shirts, buttons, posters, books, magazines or other items, is permitted only in support of non-profit or charitable organizations.   Selling or distributing items requires written authorization on the Permit and will be restricted to designated tables.

Any materials, displays or speeches that would be frightening or deemed inappropriate to any age group is prohibited.


For large events, organizers are responsible for making arrangements for crowd and traffic control.

It is the policy and mandate of the Facilities Management, Corporate Services Department to facilitate and support events taking place on Nathan Phillips Square. From time to time events occurring on the Square will have security requirements over and above those routinely provided by the Facilities Management’s Security Unit during an event.

Event organizers are free to determine their security needs and how these needs will be met in order to protect their own equipment as long as these arrangements are determined in consultation with the Supervisor Buildings Security, South District, Facilities Management at 416-392-1013.


No signs can be posted at any time without prior approval.  This includes the columns, building, walkways, or arches of City Hall.  No signs of any kind are permitted in the Peace Garden. Limited signage is allowed on the stage and surrounding area. Sketches of all proposed signage must be sent to the Event Support Supervisor for approval prior to your event.  The display of any tobacco company or product identification is strictly prohibited.


City of Toronto Municipal Code 636 and former Municipal Code 237 bans smoking on City of Toronto Public Squares including Nathan Phillips Square. The smoking ban is in effect 24 hours/day, seven days a week. Please inform event participants that it is against the law to smoke while attending the square.


Sports events on the Square must meet safety requirements.  If approved, each participant must sign a waiver prior to the event.


After hours fees will be charged for all events starting January 1, 2016. Fees are subject to change without notice.

Civic Centres Staffing Costs





$153 + tax

Minimum 4 hours


$45.90 + tax

Minimum 4 hours


$66.30 + tax

Minimum 4 hours

Fore Person

$76.50 + tax

Minimum 4 hours

Regular Set up

$45.90 + tax

Minimum 4 hours

 Building Operator $51.00 + tax     Minimum 4 hours


Heating and cooking equipment are not permitted in a tent.  All tent structures require approval.  Building permits may be for tents where the aggregate area is more than 60 sq. m. All other installations require a construction permit from Building Division, Main Floor, West, City Hall, Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N2; (416) 392-7575, and a Certificate of Insurance from the company erecting the tent (See Insurance section).

There is an inventory of:



Folding Chairs



Two (2) 10x10

One (1) 20x20 (weather dependant) 

One (1) 10x15




One (1)


Only vehicles essential to the operation of the event will be permitted access and must receive written authorization in advance. 

Scheduled deliveries for your event must be made through the Chestnut Gate.  Access to the area must be requested in advance.  Vehicles in excess of 23,000 pounds (loaded) cannot be accommodated on the Square

The speed limit must not exceed 8km/hour.  All vehicles driving on the Square must have hazard lights on and be escorted on and off the Square. Drivers are required to report to the Security Desk, City Hall to gain access.

Please specify anticipated arrival and departure times, size, weight and number of axles with respect to each vehicle, when completing your Application.  All vehicles must be off the Square one hour prior to the event start time.  Vehicles will not be allowed on the Square during the event time.


Public washroom facilities exist at the Square. Portable toilets and hand washing stations may be required for your event based on projected attendance.


Please note, in order to comply with City Council’s Waste Diversion Policy, the person(s) and/or organization(s) signing this application must agree to dispose of all waste and recycling generated by their event this includes the removal of all grey waste water from site.  Fees may be charged for the disposal of recycling and garbage and/or clean up.

ExpandNathan Phillips Square Revitalization

Nathan Phillips Square is where Torontonians gather, share memories and welcome the world. It is a place where people come together in the spirit of openness, community and democracy.

The City of Toronto is proud to reinvigorate its greatest public space, Nathan Phillips Square, and reintroduce it as a more functional and environmentally sustainable meeting place for future generations.

Other Sites and Locations

ExpandCivic Centre Facilities - Indoor

Certain City of Toronto Buildings are available for meetings, events and displays. Booking procedures will vary and you will need to speak with the appropriate divisional/location contacts for further information.


City Hall, East York Civic Centre, Etobicoke Civic Centre, Metro Hall, North York Civic Centre, Scarborough Civic Centre and York Civic Centre

NOTE: Organizations must be a local not-for-profit or charitable group to book Public Space at the above Civic Centres. Please refer to the Facilities Management - Civic Centre Booking website below for further information and the Civic Centre Public Space Account Application Form.

Telephone: 416-397-7220


Website:Facilities Management - Civic Centre Booking

City Records & Archives Building
Kristen Kitcher, Facilities Management
Phone: 416-397-7199

Memorial Hall
Anita De Castro, Facilities Management
Phone: 416-397-0817

Union Station - Sir John A. Macdonald Plaza
Syma Shah
Phone: 647-338-6816


In general, most City Facilities operate on a first come first serve basis.


Fees vary depending on the facility and requirements.


  • Contact the facility you are interested in using to enquire about the date(s) you wish.
  • Please note that booking applications, procedures, policies and fees will vary based on the facility you wish to use.

Associated Topics/Reference:

City Squares (Outdoor)

Parks, Forestry & Recreation Facilities

City of Toronto Arts & Cultural Centres - Rentals

City of Toronto Museums - Rentals

Forms Required / Guides / Reference:


ExpandCivic Squares - Outdoor

Civic Squares are available for special events and festivals.  Other than, Yonge-Dundas Square and Sir John A. Macdonald Plaza at Union Station, only registered not for profit and or charitable groups are permitted to use them provided that they meet all criteria as outlined by the specific Division that manages that property.

City of Toronto Bylaw, Municipal Code 636 and former Municipal Code 237, bans smoking on City of Toronto Public Squares. The smoking ban is in effect 24 hours/day, seven days a week. Visit Toronto Public Health for more information on smoke-free legislation and quit smoking resources.


Below is a listing of various Civic Squares with contacts.

Albert Campbell Square
Katheeshan Ramachandran
Phone: 416-396-7766
Fax: 416-396-5399

Website: Albert Campbell Square

David Pecaut Square
Derek Trenchard
Phone: 416-397-9887
Fax: 416-397-4464

Website: David Pecaut Square

Mel Lastman Square
Paul Quinlan
Phone: 416-395-6011
Fax: 416-395-7886

Website: Mel Lastman Square

Mel Lastman Square Guidelines [PDF]

Mel Lastman Square Application [PDF]

Nathan Phillips Square
Shalini Srivastava
Phone: 416-395-1304
Fax: 416-392-5600

Nathan Phillips Square Special Events Guidelines

Union Station - Sir John A. Macdonald Plaza
Syma Shah
Phone: 647-338-6816

Yonge Dundas Square
Phone: 416-979-9960
Fax: 416-979-8836
Website: Yonge-Dundas Square Website

Yonge Dundas Square Guidelines/Application


  • In general most City Squares operate on a first come first serve basis. Please note annual events have first right of refusal of their annual date(s)


  • Vary depending on facility and scope of event. 


  • Contact the City Square you wish to utilize to enquire about availability
  • Obtain and review copies of applications, forms, fees, guidelines and policies and procedures.  NOTE: Booking procedures will vary based on the Civic Square you wish to use.
  • Create a site plan for your event including all the appropriate details (food vendors, garbage/wastewater disposal sites, sanitary facilities, etc)
  • Obtain insurance as required for the event

Associated Topics/Reference:

Forms Required / Guides / Reference:

ExpandParks, Forestry & Recreation Facilities Permitting

Toronto Parks, Forestry & Recreation does allow not-for-profit and charitable organizations to use parks and community recreation centres for special events provided they meet all criteria and regulations.  For-profit, commercial or non-recreation groups can not apply for a permit.

Complete list of Parks

Complete list of Recreation Centres


Toronto City Hall
PERMITS, Parks, Forestry & Recreation
100 Queen Street West, Main Floor East Tower
Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
Website - please see this website for the appropriate facility contact and more information:  Parks, Forestry & Recreation Permits


  • Contact the District-specific permit officer for facility availability, to review event requirements and limitations/prohibited activities
  • Obtain and review the "Special Events Guidelines for City Parklands" and "Waste Diversion Plan"
  • Submit your application to the appropriate Special Events Permitting contact.
  • A  Conditional Letter of Approval will be provided to the client at least 30 days prior to their event date and 60 days if the event includes alcohol
  • Obtain additional permits and approvals depending on nature of your event (see Associated Topics/Reference below for some areas that might apply)
  • Submit Insurance Certificate, pay permit fees, pay deposit if required

Suggested Timelines/Deadlines:

  • 8 weeks minimum in advance of the permit requested date


  • Yes, for permit
  • Yes, a damage deposit is required

Associated Topics / Reference:

The following areas may also be applicable:

Forms Required / Guides / Reference:

ExpandRoad and Sidewalk Closures - Street Events

Transportation Services issues permits for the temporary closure of streets and sidewalks to facilitate special events and foot races.


Transportation Services, Street Events

Etobicoke District

Etobicoke Civic Centre, 399 The West Mall

Etobicoke, ON

Marianne Zager: 416-394-8348

North York District

5100 Yonge Street, 4th Floor

Toronto ON  M2N 5V7

Franca Mollo: 416-395-6266

Anita Ortiz: 416-395-7438

Scarborough District

Scarborough Civic Centre, 2nd Floor

150 Borough Drive

Rose Milson: 416-396-7335

Toronto & East York District
17th Floor, Metro Hall, 55 John Street
Toronto, Ontario M5V 3C6

Rita Hoy: 416-392-1802

Donna Lonski: 416-338-5457

Thiviyan Satkunathasan: 416-338-5445

Website:Transportation - Street Events


  • Obtain and review the guidelines and applications as applicable
  • Create map/drawing or route of area impacted by closure and provide dimensions and indicate what items are being placed on the sidewalk or road
  • Create a Traffic Control and Public Safety Plan to ensure that Emergency Access is maintained as per guidelines
  • Note disruptions to TTC, Street Parking, etc.
  • Create a Waste (Garbage) Management Plan
  • Consult with Transportation Services, Toronto Police, TTC, Paramedic Services, Municipal Licensing and Standards, Public Health, and other applicable agencies
  • Create an Emergency Action Plan and submit to the Office of Emergency Management
  • Consult with and provide notices to impacted business, BIA and residents of potential closure with a copy to be provided to Transportation Services
  • If serving alcohol, you must have a Letter of Municipal Significance and written documentation from AGCO
  • Upon approval from Transportation Services, provide Insurance Certificate with minimum liability coverage of $2 million, naming the City of Toronto as additional insured with a cross-liability clause and pay the required permit fee and signage costs installed by City staff
  • Arrange for signs, barricades, cones, security, police, etc as required.
  • If required, complete an "Application for Bicycle/Foot Race on City Streets" and have participants sign a "Release, Waiver and Indemnity" form

Suggested Timelines/Deadlines:

  • 8 weeks prior to the event for a closure on any boulevard and on any Local Road
  • 12 weeks prior to the event for a closure on a Collector Road
  • 16 weeks prior to the event for a closure on an Arterial Road
  • 52 weeks prior to the event for a closure on an Expressway


  • Yes. Daily Fee for Street Closure
  • Yes, Sidewalk sale fee for a period of up to 3 days

Associated Topics / Reference:

The following areas may also be applicable:

Forms Required / Guides / Reference:

ExpandCreative Spaces

Making Space for Culture is a City of Toronto database of over 1,400 spaces where cultural activity takes place in the city. SpaceFinder Toronto is a state of the art online venue finder that helps arts organizations showcase the venues they have available for rent, and helps renters of creative space easily find what they need.