Bringing the City Alive: Impact of the Arts

Through a partnership with Leger, Toronto Arts Foundation is examining the impact of the arts on life in Toronto. Public surveys provide timely snapshots of how residents access the arts, how the arts contribute to community development, and improve the quality of life in our city.

Bringing the City Alive 2013 examined the arts as a way of attracting residents to live in Toronto. 798 Ontario residents who either ‘live in, work in or visit Toronto’ were surveyed on their views of the arts in Toronto.

The results revealed how central the arts are to life in Toronto.

63% of GTA residents surveyed said that the city’s arts and cultural activities are important in their decision to live in the GTA.
65% of those surveyed agree that the city’s arts and cultural activities help companies attract and retain good employees.
65% of those surveyed showed support for the Toronto City Council Executive Committee’s motion (January 10 2013) calling for a significant increase in direct arts investment.

Bringing the City Alive 2014 was expanded to look at many aspects of arts engagement and value including connecting to cultural heritage

The results revealed how residents value the arts.

70% of GTA residents regularly engage in the arts whether through attendance, volunteerism or donation.
74% agree that the arts bring benefits to Toronto including attracting tourists, hightlighting the city’s diversity, and improving the economy.
62% feel that funding to the arts should be further increased.


Bringing the City Alive 2015 will be released in March 2015. This study will revisit questions from 2013 and 2014 and expand to include questions about early exposure to the arts and how the arts improve life at a neighbourhood level.