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Iconic ‘Toronto’ sign at Nathan Phillips Square vandalized

BT Toronto | posted Tuesday, Jun 30th, 2020

The iconic ‘Toronto’ sign at Nathan Phillips Square has been vandalized.

Most of the vandalism can be found on the back of the sign, expressing a variety of views on the current political situation in the country.  A blue tarp with various slogans has also been attached to the front part of the sign.

It is not known who defaced the sign or when it occurred.

The square has been the site of protests over the past month. More recently, a group of people have set up tents and other gear on the square.

“Afro Indigenous Rising” said on their Facebook page on June 20 they “are occupying Nathan Phillips Square in protest of the Police. For the abolition of the Police Force.”

A spokesperson for the city said they hope to repair the sign soon.

“The City is continuing to monitor the protest to ensure public safety – for the protestors and the public alike,” said Brad Ross, chief communications officer with the city. “We’ll be assessing vandalism and have any damage repaired as quickly as possible.” 

The sign was originally installed as part of the 2015 PanAm and ParaPam American Games.  It was only meant to be a temporary installation, but it soon became a popular spot for selfie-seekers and tourists alike. Much like the CN Tower, the sign has become part of the city’s visual identity.

In 2019, the city announced it would be upgrading the sign as years of exposure to the region’s climate had taken their toll.

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