Argos moving to new practice facility at former high school where late Rob Ford coached

Dan Ralph, Canadian Press

The Toronto Argonauts will adopt a new practice facility for the remainder of the 2017 season.

When the CFL team reconvenes Sunday, it will be at the former Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School. And that will be the Argos’ home away from home for the rest of the season after securing a short-term lease with the Toronto Catholic District School Board.

Toronto dropped a 41-24 home loss to the Calgary Stampeders on Thursday night and its players are off until Sunday. The Argos will continue to play their home games at BMO Field.

The high school, where late Toronto Mayor Rob Ford coached football from 2002 until 2013, closed its doors June 30 because of low enrollment.

The Argos were reportedly one of many parties to express an interest to Toronto Catholic District School Board about the school.

The Argonauts had been working out at York University since the start of rookie camp in late May. But the school’s football team now needs its field to begin preparations for the 2017 season.

The CFL club returned to York this year after holding its 2016 training camp at the University of Guelph.

Toronto had called Downsview Park home since 2014 after securing a partnership with Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment to practise at a facility located next to Toronto FC’s training ground.

Toronto FC is owned by MLSE, whose chairman, Larry Tanenbaum, also owns the Argos with Bell. They purchased the CFL franchise from Hamilton businessman David Braley in 2015.

But a common complaint at Downsview Park was the different venues used by the football club were not centrally located. The Argos feel Don Bosco holds the potential to achieve that and are continuing talks on a potential long-term lease agreement there past 2017.

There’s a grass football field currently at Don Bosco but it’s not suitable to practise on, meaning the Argos will bus to different fields for their workouts for the remainder of this season.

If the CFL club can secure a long-term lease at Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School, then it’s expected it would look at investing in future renovations, including the possible construction of a new turf field.

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12 Comments on Argos moving to new practice facility at former high school where late Rob Ford coached

  1. Paul Garner // August 5, 2017 at 12:06 pm //

    “the Argos will bus to different fields for their workouts for the remainder of this season”. Really. Could you imagine this happening to the Blue Jays, Leafs or Raptors? This is so sad. At one point in time, and not all that long ago, the Argos were a top sell in Toronto. Boy, how times have changed

    • I think it’s just a matter of time before they are gone.
      Tannebaum made a huge mistake in buying the Argos, he was assured that a move to BMO would guarantee sell-outs and a large season ticket base.
      I think we could be talking about an Argos dispersal draft over the winter

  2. Is it just me or is the writer of this article contradicting himself? Article starts:

    “The Toronto Argonauts will adopt a new practice facility for the remainder of the 2017 season.

    When the CFL team reconvenes Sunday, it will be at the former Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School. And that will be the Argos’ home away from home for the rest of the season after securing a short-term lease with the Toronto Catholic District School Board.”

    Then the second last paragraph:

    “There’s a grass football field currently at Don Bosco but it’s not suitable to practise on, meaning the Argos will bus to different fields for their workouts for the remainder of this season.”

    Not that I care, hell, the people of Toronto don’t care but…Are they going to be there the rest of the year or not?? First one says yes, second one says No.

  3. Jim Corrigall // August 5, 2017 at 2:01 pm //

    Seems to me their meetings and locker room will be at the school but they will be bused, in full gear, who knows where on any given day. If they can turn Bosco into a permanent home base long term it would be great but in the short term, as in THIS season, this is terrible. Surely ownership can come up with the funds to secure a permanent field.

  4. Tannenbaum is in this for the long haul. Rest assured of that

  5. Tannenbaum is no dummy. He was part of the group that lived through the Leafs’ decline and re-emergence, the rise of the Raptors and now TFC. So he’s got some experience with riding out the pains of rebuilding a sports team & brand. I’m sure the various practice venues will take their toll on the Argos this season and Trestman will do his best to keep his team on point. But next year, when things have settled down (coach, GM, practice facility, BMO scheduling, etc etc), the Argos will become a force again. The Argos aren’t dying, they’re in the process of rebirth.

  6. David Rouleau // August 5, 2017 at 4:50 pm //

    I just want to wish the Argos good luck. They need fan support.

  7. Bart Oates // August 5, 2017 at 9:09 pm //

    How appropriate. Tannenbaum is making the Argos the biggest embarrassment in the CFL* and now they are moving into a facility located where Toronto’s biggest ever embarrassment once coached.

    *Toronto population: 3 million. Avg attendance: 10,000 (and going downward).
    Regina population: 215,000. Avg attendance: 30,000.

  8. IMAN ICE HORSIE // August 6, 2017 at 11:41 am //

    One of the best mayors in Canada’s history. He actually did what he said he was going to do! Imagine that! Unfortunately the liberal media didn’t like his looks or this right leaning views. They destroyed him for their own selfish causes. IMO probably caused his death.

    On a non political note. Kind of embarrassing when a pro team has to rely on a high school team for a facility. Mind you it’s better than the old gopher hole filled abandoned field they used to practice on.

  9. Can’t let your political statement go unchallenged. Perhaps the worst mayor in Toronto history – who knows about the rest of the country? Lets leave it at that.

    It not a high school team the Argos are relying on, but a field belonging to a vacant high school.

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