Life on MaRs

Life on MaRS Historically, Toronto has been a rich source of basic research that it has struggled to commercialize. That’s about to change. By Kirsten Weir The MaRS "heritage building" was once the Toronto General Hospital's College Wing © 2005 Ben Rahn/A-Frame Inc. During a break from the busy BIO conference in 2000, physician and entrepreneur Calvin Stiller decided to take a walk through Boston with John Evans, a physic

Kirsten Weir
Jan 13, 2010

Life on MaRS

Historically, Toronto has been a rich source of basic research that it has struggled to commercialize. That’s about to change.


The MaRS "heritage building" was once the Toronto General Hospital's College Wing
© 2005 Ben Rahn/A-Frame Inc.

During a break from the busy BIO conference in 2000, physician and entrepreneur Calvin Stiller decided to take a walk through Boston with John Evans, a physician and former president of the University of Toronto. Strolling through Kendall Square, Stiller was struck by the collection of biotech companies in such close proximity to the city’s academic institutions. “It occurred to me [that] this is exactly what Toronto is missing,” he says.

Ten years later, smack dab in the middle of Toronto’s Discovery District—10 city blocks in the heart of downtown including the University of Toronto, Ryerson University, numerous teaching hospitals, and research institutes—is an eye-catching new building called the MaRS...