Now, as the area that housed the club plays host to rapid condo development, a local filmmaker hascreated a petition to name a laneway at its former site in honour of the groundbreaking venue. Colm Hogan, who is currently at work on a documentary project about the club titled Back to the Zone, wants the city to mark its place in history with an official designation.
“[It was] the first nightclub to open in Toronto’s entertainment district. The club also introduced the city to hip hop, house, and techno. It provided a safe space for everyone to enjoy themselves, including White, Black, Asian, gay, straight and transgendered people. The Zone really put Toronto on the map, in terms of establishing a music, fashion and cultural hub.”
The request is not without precedence in Toronto. Reggae Lane near Eglinton and Oakwood was given an official marker to honour its role in fostering the city’s early reggae scene. Toronto has long struggled to pay homage to its past, but initiatives like these have garnered far more support in recent years.
The days of floor-rattling bass may be long gone at Richmond and Simcoe, but the Twilight Zone’s influence on the city’s music and night life scene lives on. A small official reminder of that would be most welcome in an area that’s undergone massive change over the last two decades.