New Years at Nathan Phillips Square cut short due to extreme cold
Kayla Goodfield, CP24.com
Published Friday, December 29, 2017 3:45PM EST
Last Updated Saturday, December 30, 2017 11:39AM EST
New Year’s Eve festivities at Nathan Phillips Square will be shortened due to extreme cold temperatures in the city.
The annual event will begin shortly before midnight on Sunday.
In a news release issued on Friday, the City of Toronto said the event will include a DJ set and a firework display counting down to midnight.
“The City will continue to monitor weather conditions over the next 48 hours and make further adjustments, if necessary,” the news release said.
“Residents and volunteers attending the event are advised to dress appropriately for the weather, cover all extremities, keep active when outdoors, if possible and monitor themselves and others for signs of cold stress.”
All previously booked live performers will still be compensated as per their contract but will not perform at the event, the general manager of economic development and culture division Mike Williams said while speaking to reporters on Friday afternoon. The scheduled performers were supposed to begin at 8 p.m. on Sunday.
Williams said there will be a large presence of paramedics at Nathan Phillips Square.
“We’re making sure as many places in the area are open for people who want to go inside and warm up,” he said.
As Toronto residents ring in the New Year the temperature is expected to hit -23 C around midnight on Monday but will feel like -28 C with the wind chill, according to CP24’s weather specialist Patricia Jaggernauth
“Right now the forecasts are averaging around 20 below,” Williams said. “If the weather was to get much colder than that it would cancel the whole event. Especially if the winds picked up and the wind chill factor got worse then that would also be a cause for concern.”
Williams said he believes this event has only ever been cancelled due to lightening and high winds but not due to extreme cold temperatures.
For transportation to this event, the TTC will keep all subway lines running until approximately 4 a.m. on Monday. All TTC service will be free from 7 p.m. on Sunday until 7 a.m. on Monday.
GO Transit and UP Express will be providing extended late-night service and offer free rides after 7 p.m. on Sunday.