Sneaking up onto the Metro Toronto Convention Centre was certainly one of the most demanding adventures to date. It had a little bit of everything; some climbing, some bypassing, some improvisation and a lot of patience. The method was unconventional as usual, and it required me to first go onto Union Station once again, fetch a device that I remembered seeing on its roof during my last visit, and then returning back to my POE. Once I arrived, to my dismay there were two workers replacing lightbulbs directly beside my entry point, so I had to sit around for about an hour until I could finally start making my way in. Climbing up the outside was no simple task, I had to balance my way across a slippery walkway, then climb up one full story of slanted aluminum on the exterior of the building, digging my feet into the ribbing of the metal to climb upwards. This was only the half of it, I'd love to share all the little details, but it would involve giving away the way in.
Despite the hours of tedious trial and error, when I finally made it up onto the roof of the North hall, I knew that it had been worth it.
As of many of my favourite spots in the city, the giant scale of this building is simply astonishing. It feels like you're walking on another planet, with the CN tower and Skydome looming off in the distance like the twin suns of Tatooine.
However, the jewel of MTCC lies in the glass paneling that covers the north end of the building along Front st. Climbing up the old school ladders and sitting atop the iconic building in the warm weather made it one of the finest evenings to date.
Once I had satisfied my love for heights, I figured it was time to check out the mech room and hopefully make it into the inside of the building. The mech rooms were divided into three separate spaces, each with two stairwells going down. Starting from the westmost side, I wandered around the machinery jogging down the stairwells one at a time. After hiking up and down 7 of them, I finally made it to the one that didn’t simply lead to a street level exit. Instead, I was greeted by a few canted open doors that led to some pretty gnarly spaces.
This was one of those times where success can be attributed to sheer luck. As I neared the bottom of the stairs all of the doors were locked except one; a scrunched up piece of paper towel was stuffed in the hinge. This led me into a storage room and beyond that another door had been propped open by a piece of wood. And beyond that another door led me into the north fucking hall of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Paper tower, wood and an unlocked door. Sometimes that’s all that stands between you and the inside of one of the coolest places in the city.
It was so bizarre seeing the place so empty, I’m so used to it being crammed with booths at Fan Expo and with lines of fans waiting to get an autograph from their favourite tv stars. The contrast between locations when they’re used or unused is incredible, it’s a shame that most people never really get the chance to see that difference.
Despite wanting to check out the entire floor, unfortunately there were workers hanging around the north west half of the room, so I instead checked out the maintenance and storage areas in the east end.
I wanted to cross over to the south hall through the skywalk, however there were far too many cameras and the risk outweighed the reward. Furthermore, it was already 3am and I had to get up early the next day. Thus my journey came to an end. I slowly retraced my steps, climbing all the way back up to the roof and back down towards ground level.
The Metro Toronto Convention Centre is one hell of an adventure, and I’d love to go back. I encourage anyone who likes a challenge to check it out. It has a great mix of problem solving and stealth.
I hope you guys enjoyed the write up!