The National Post has picked Spacing’s launch of Toronto subway buttons in 2005 as one of the decades as one of the best examples of how Torontonians are more engaged with their city.
2005 The urban activists behind Spacing magazine created a batch of one-inch buttons featuring the tile designs and colour schemes of TTC subway platforms. We at the Post deemed them to be “the civic pride fashion statement of the year” and Mayor David Miller reportedly handed them out gleefully as if they were oversized Smarties. The magazine sold about 35,000 buttons in 2005. “People for the most part are proud of where they live and want to show that off,” says Matt Blackett, publisher of Spacing magazine. Blackett tried all year to team up with the TTC to sell and market the pins. But the killjoys at the transit commission said it wouldn’t be feasible. However, Adam Giambrone, city councillor and TTC chair, said recently that there is still hope. “The Spacing subway buttons have been a terrific way for Toronto’s communities to engage with their neighbourhoods and really take notice of some of the little things around us.” Since then, more than 120,000 buttons have been sold. They’ve been shipped all over the world, Japan being the biggest market for them. And now you can get Spacing’s newly released 1954 classic subway station buttons.