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SpaceX and BMO will open a rocket-launch campus at the Toronto Eaton Centre

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By Dylan Freeman-Grist

The Bank of Montreal (BMO) and SpaceX recently announced that they will be constructing a rocket-launch-campus-pad-city on top of the Eaton Centre. The project is a collaboration between the DMZ, The Transmedia Zone, The Ryerson Satellite Zone, The Campus Space Initiative, Ryerson Futures, The Student Learning Centre, Google’s Sidewalk and Enactus Ryerson. The Eyeopener  has exclusive details.

“Dude it’s going to be fucking lit,” SpaceX CEO Elon Musk told The Eyeopener in a video call from Silicon Valley while tinkering with a flamethrower. “I envision a world where a casual trip to the mall can turn into a casual trip to the Moon,” he said. “Me and my unlimited amount of Tesla money are here for it.”

The project has been green-lit by the city and is expected to start in three days. The construction, which has reportedly taken precedence over all other construction projects in the city, was fast-tracked immediately to the front of the usual 45-year wait time to be signed off by a city inspector. While the exact function or operational structure of the facility has yet to be determined, preparation for its construction is already underway. This, city planners and SpaceX lobbyists say, will ensure a steady and consistent space program operating just above the heads of the Eaton Centre’s 50 million annual shoppers.

“Listen, like most things, we don’t know or care about how it functions,” said Bernard Grey, the CEO of BMO. “We’re just going to throw our logo on it and trust the process.” Grey also confirmed that he would welcome the idea of opening multiple bank branches in the space campus, despite there being 40 within a 15 minute walking distance of the site.

While Musk said the details are “fuzzy,” it is expected that student leaders may get the chance to compete in a case competition, organized by Enactus Ryerson. The first-place team will receive $500,000 in funding to launch their startup idea into space at the new facility right after a shopping spree at H&M. The competition, slated for October of next year, will take place on a Saturday morning during peak mid-term season. Posters advertising free food for participants of the competition have already popped up in The Ted Rogers School of Management and George Vari Engineering buildings.

“As of right now, there is simply zero social entrepreneurship going on in space, so this collaboration fits really well into our mandate,” added Christie Sharp, fourth-year
marketing major and president of Enactus Ryerson. “At first we were worried that students might shy away from the challenge, but the demand has already blown away
our expectations.”

“Show up grab some pizza, win the case and end up on a rocket hurtling towards Mars that same day, you know I’m there,” noted third-year business management student Brad Back.

In an interview, Rye president Mohamed Lachemi said that if the campus can find its footing and begin regularly launching rockets full of people and equipment it would “naturally” become the first step in opening the DMZ moon incubator zone, “a key pillar in the 40 year strategic plan constructed by the DMZ’s board of directors last May.”

“For us, it’s about how far we can place a zone from campus before regular students realize they don’t benefit from them in any possible way.” Noted Lachemi. “We tried the Russian Peninsula and that was a no-go. Saturn, I think, is our next logical option.”

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