Uniting Canada's Largest Climbing Community

Porn Theatre Becomes Toronto’s Newest Climbing Gym
This fall, the iconic Metro Theatre at 677 Bloor Street W will be transformed into Basecamp Climbing, Toronto’s newest climbing gym.
Metro Theatre

The iconic Metro Theatre will soon become Basecamp Climbing.

With a height of almost 40-feet, the gym will feature lead climbing, top-rope routes and bouldering. Perhaps most interesting for many Toronto climbers, is the fact that Basecamp Climbing is approximately a three minute walk from Christie subway station. This makes it the only gym that’s accessible from the subway line. This is a compelling feature, as all other Toronto gyms require more complicated transit/driving access. The gym will further leverage its unique downtown location by providing ample bike parking.

Basecamp Climbing is a just a three minute walk from Christie subway station.

The gym’s owner, Matthew Languay wants to create space that has a community feel and serves the needs of a broad range of climbers.

“I think there’s a large number of climbers that live in the neighbourhood and would appreciate a gym that’s easily accessible by foot, bike or transit. Driving to many of the existing gyms is just not viable for many folks who live in the city core,” says Languay.
Basecamp Climbing Prow

The dramatic prow feature at Basecamp Climbing.

As with most modern gyms, Basecamp Climbing will be designed and built by an outside company (Walltopia) specializing in this construction.

While the gym will have complete facilities during its opening this fall, there are plans to expand the gym to include a modern training centre and lounge area.
Basecamp Climbing Main Wall

A view of some of the wall surfaces at the new Basecamp Climbing gym.

Finally, Languay plans to launch a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to help preserve the building and the theatre’s distinct marquee, as well as help offset the costs of installing a climbing gym in such a unique building. Languay wants to eventually use the marquee to promote the gym's climbing events while paying homage to the building's special history.

Languay believes that, “Toronto has done a relatively poor job of preserving much of its past. Just because a neighbourhood is changing and evolving, doesn’t mean that we have to forget how it got here. This theatre represents a special piece of Toronto’s history and that’s why I want to preserve the exterior, while transforming the interior into a modern climbing gym for the community.”

You can check out the cheeky Kickstarter video below (watch it to the end) and contribute to the Kickstarter campaign.
For more details visit Basecamp Climbing’s website.
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Gus Alexandropoulos is a freelance writer who has been involved in the outdoor industry for over 35 years. During his career he has been the editor at Canada’s national climbing magazine, as well as the gear editor for a national cycling magazine, triathlon magazine and running magazine. His work has been published in Canada’s national newspaper, The Globe and Mail, and he has been a guest on television and radio broadcasts. His passion for climbing began in Ontario in the mid-80s and he continues to travel extensively in search of crisp conditions and steep rock.