THE BLOG

22
Apr

Clean CityPlace Earth Day Cleanup

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Clean CityPlace Together on Sunday, April 22! It was a success.

Thanks to sponsors and participants including Concord, The CityPlace Residents Association, Diabetes Canada, CityPlace Fox and Fiddle, Harry Roche and The City of Toronto Parks and Recreation staff who provided cleaning items, and the volunteers for making the event a success. Our local MPP Han Dong, City Councillor Joe Cressy, and many of the local provincial and municipal candidates attended the event.

Canoe Landing Park was a community hub and busy with actively engaged volunteers for a greener planet! Residents cleaned up litter, and donated household items for reuse, recycling or for waste diversion.

We have other environmental initiatives planned to build upon the success of today’s events.

Much appreciation to everyone.

20
Apr

Colour New Millennium Green

Worth Repeating 20017 Earth Day OpEd piece by CPRA President. The ideas are still relevant today.

Colour New Millennium Green

by Gary Pieters

First published on April 19, 2007

Environmentalism has spawned a green vocabulary. Ecocentric words have become the language of discourse: air quality, biodiversity, biodegradability, climate change, CFCs, combustion, energy conservation, retrofitting, environmental assessments, energy efficiency, emissions, global warming, hybrid transportation, organic products, ozone layer, reduce, reuse, recycle, smog, solar panels, sustainable development, wind turbines, waste diversion.

The environment is the third millennium’s universal issue of public importance, and how we respond to it will influence the size of the ecological footprint we leave behind on this planet.

According to the Toronto City Summit Alliance, the environment was identified as the top issue among Canadians, with 26 per cent of respondents ranking it Number 1 in mid-January.

Ecological practices are taking root and invigorating the quality of environmental citizenship in the City of Toronto, across North America and around the world. This is spurring innovation in environmental policy, research and education, lifestyle changes, community action and new ways of thinking.

Environmentalism has spawned a green vocabulary. Ecocentric words have become the language of discourse: air quality, biodiversity, biodegradability, climate change, CFCs, combustion, energy conservation, retrofitting, environmental assessments, energy efficiency, emissions, global warming, hybrid transportation, organic products, ozone layer, reduce, reuse, recycle, smog, solar panels, sustainable development, wind turbines, waste diversion.

The impact of this green momentum has resulted in the increasing involvement of residents, academic institutions, community-based organizations, businesses, labour unions, corporations and foundations in developing practices that would better the environmental quality of communities. Such multiple and intersecting levels of engagement ensure that everyone has a role to play in protecting and preserving the environmental health, cleanliness and well-being of people, plants, animals and the overall ecosystem of our diverse city.

The Toronto Board of Trade’s "can the litter" website spotlights the most commonly littered products in the city, their environmental impact and their biodegradability lifespan. Did you know that paper takes up to five months to break down naturally; cigarette butts up to 12 years; plastic bags up to 20 years; tin and aluminum cans up to 100 years; and glass bottles up to 1 million years? Put your disposable items in the right bins!

The green bin and blue box programs are among the recycling initiatives that have positioned the GTA and the City of Toronto high on the list of ecologically clean and beautiful urban areas. Through the green bin and blue box programs, the three Rs – reduce, reuse and recycle – have become a reality for Torontonians.

A quick perusal of "Facts about Toronto Trash" available at www.toronto.ca/garbage/facts.htm provides evidence-based information about the benefits of the green bin and blue box programs.

Individuals and households are leading the way in waste reduction, diversion and elimination.

We learn there is a "90 per cent participation rate in the green bin program"; "510,000 single-family households across Toronto use the green bins to collect and process household organic waste"; through the green bin program "approximately 100,000 tonnes of waste is diverted from landfill annually (resulting in 2,750 fewer trucks to Michigan each year)." Through blue box usage, "in 2005 Toronto recycled 158,116 residential tonnes of blue/grey box recyclables (resulting in 4,650 fewer trucks to Michigan)." The success of the green bin and blue box initiatives demonstrates how far we have come in terms of reducing the amount of household waste sent to landfills.

On April 7, I attended the community environment day in my downtown Toronto area ward. I observed that many of the items dropped off were either for recycling, disposal or reuse. These included more than 40 televisions, 100 computers and computer-related products, 25 bags of Styrofoam and similar materials, more than 100 cans of paint and paint products and a variety of cellphones, batteries, art supplies, fabric, furniture, books and equipment.

A 40-foot Goodwill truck was filled to capacity with the items community residents donated for reuse. This event put a dent in the volume of material that otherwise would have been sent to the landfill.

Weekly community environmental days will occur in more than 40 Toronto communities between April and the end of September. Information on the dates and locations are available at www.toronto.ca/environment_days/. The City of Toronto and GTA municipalities have many other green initiatives and activities designed to foster greener environment awareness and practices.

These include the "20-minute makeover" tomorrow in Toronto, a 20-minute cleanup blitz around offices, schools and neighbourhoods; Earth Day on April 22; a climate change action forum on April 29; bike week starting on May 28; "Lights Out Toronto," which focuses on reducing the risk factors leading to the death of migratory birds by reducing skyscraper lighting at night; and the June 12 Green Toronto Festival that will give residents more information about Toronto’s green initiatives.

Reflecting on how far we have to go to improve our current environmental practices, I believe it is up to every one of us to lead by example, to mitigate the effects that human society has on the planet. To do that, public attitudes have to continue to shift toward the greener end of the environmental spectrum.

Source: http://www.thestar.com/opinion/article/204685

19
Apr

TTC Spadina Queens Quay Loop and Harbourfront Streetcar Tunnel this weekend

TTC Spadina/Queens Quay Loop and Harbourfront Streetcar Tunnel closed this weekend. Replacement buses will operate. Details: http://www.ttc.ca/Service_Advisories/Route_diversions/510_restr.jsp

19
Apr

Metrolinx USRC Overnight Track Maintenance

Metrolinx Overnight Construction Activity and Track Maintenance Along the Union Station Rail Corridor (USRC) from Bathurst Street to Simcoe Street on Friday, April 20 to Monday, April 23 between the hours of 8:00pm and 5:00am. Please note: For the purposes of safety, work times are subject to appropriate weather conditions. Nearby residents may notice noise and vibration from equipment and power tools moving through the area during this time.

17
Apr

Bremner Blvd Partial Road Closure

Source: http://torontopolice.on.ca/newsreleases/40853

Due to concerns of falling ice from the CN Tower after the mid-April ice storm there are pedestrian and traffic restrictions including:

1. Bremner Boulevard is closed, between Lower Simcoe Street and Rees Street
2. CN Tower – full closure
3. Steamwhistle Brewery and The Rec Room – (Restricted Access)
4. Ripley’s Aquarium – (full closure)
5. Rogers Centre – Gates 1-6 closed

The Pathway along the CN Tower/Rogers Centre John St extension over the tracks is also closed.

17
Apr

A Safe Place for Pedestrians

CN Tower Falling Ice – Ice Build Up Deterrent Needed: In 2007, the President of the CityPlace Residents Association, wrote an OpEd in the Toronto Star that made recommendations including a a covered walkway, extension of the path to Spadina, and using conductive film to avoid ice buildup on the CN Tower as safety measures. The article is still relevant today, as Bremner Blvd is partially closed due to falling ice from the CN Tower from the icestorm on Saturday, April 14, 2018.

A Safe Place for Pedestrians

by Gary Pieters

First published on March 10, 2007

Toronto’s sidewalks and pedestrian walkways are, for the most part, attractive, busy and walkable environments.

Pedestrian traffic flow is influenced by local activities and resources, with the highest volumes around schools, commercial hubs and recreational and civic facilities.

Many factors affect the wellness of pedestrian spaces, but of utmost importance for safety is the physical environment.

The wild snowstorm that hit the GTA on March 1 exposed risk factors that affected pedestrian safety.

One of the major issues that emerged was the dangerously harsh wind conditions that turned ice frozen to the surface of the CN Tower into dangerous projectiles that fell for days onto the streets, sidewalks and surrounding buildings.

While no injuries were reported, at least one vehicle was damaged. The danger resulted in temporary closures of Bremner Blvd. from York St. to Rees St., and the Gardiner Expressway from Yonge St. to Spadina Ave. Bremner Blvd., within the shadow of the CN Tower, was closed for more than a week. While this was a necessary safety measure, it hindered pedestrian access to Union Station by creating a large detour.

Considering that the area attracts heavy pedestrian traffic for entertainment and sports events, perhaps the time has come for an enclosed sidewalk along Bremner from the Rogers Centre to the Air Canada Centre, tying into the Toronto underground PATH system.

Another possible solution is that an ice-buildup deterrent, such as the “transparent electrically conductive film” manufactured by Ice Engineering of New Hampshire, be wrapped around the CN Tower to prevent a repeat of the ice buildup. This is an intriguing idea worthy of a feasibility study. If the results were positive, this or similar technology could be incorporated into the design and construction of new buildings and also be used to upgrade existing skyscrapers. The end result would be greater protection for pedestrians and vehicular traffic.

Another risk factor that affected pedestrian safety during the recent stormy weather was the road-crossing hazard created by frozen snowbanks at crosswalks and intersections.

The northeast corner of Spadina at Bremner had a snowbank almost a metre high blocking the sidewalk from the roadway for more than a week.

I, along with fellow pedestrians, took considerable risks as we climbed over the snowbank to make our way onto the pedestrian crossing leading to the Spadina LRT streetcar stop.

Pedestrians who chose not to climb the snowbank also took a risk by walking along the roadway in the path of cars making right turns from Bremner onto Spadina, increasing the danger of pedestrian-vehicle collisions.

The situation at this crosswalk clearly was hazardous for pedestrians trying to cross the street to catch the Spadina streetcar and should have been corrected quickly.

If we want to promote walking communities, the physical environment must be safe and pedestrian-friendly.

In Toronto, collisions involving cars and pedestrians are not infrequent. According to data provided by City of Toronto Transportation Services, from January to September 2006 there were 1,493 pedestrian injuries and 27 fatalities resulting from collisions.

A data map illustrating the worst intersections for collisions involving pedestrians is available online at http://www.toronto.ca/transportation/publications/brochures/2006_ped.pdf. The tally illustrates that pedestrian-related collisions occur with high frequency at major intersections in the downtown core on Bloor, Wellesley, College, Dundas, Queen, King and Front Sts.; and also Yonge, Bay, St. George, Spadina and Bathurst. Other areas of the city, including Danforth Ave. and Yonge St. at Steeles Ave., show a similar danger.

I believe that frequent pedestrian traffic reports provided by the print, broadcast and wireless media could be used to foster awareness or warn pedestrians of hazards at intersections that develop as a result of weather, excess pedestrian traffic, vehicular collisions, defective traffic lights and/or road damage.

Increasing pedestrian road-safety awareness would be a preventative and caring way to improve the city’s walkability by reducing the risk factors that result in collisions.

Similarly, timely maintenance of sidewalks and other walkways, quick snow clearing, appropriate signage alerting pedestrians to temporary or ongoing risks on roads and at intersections would encourage more people to walk.

The city benefits ecologically, socially, physically and economically from being pedestrian-friendly. A walkable city with safe, attractive and accessible sidewalks, street lights, traffic lights and public transportation stimulates greater pedestrian movement to places within reasonable walking distance.

As more people walk, their increased daily physical activity should result in better health. The intensification of the city core already provides greater opportunity for more Torontonians to work, study and participate in recreational activities within walking distance of their homes. Greater pedestrian traffic, in turn, improves the identity and vitality of neighbourhoods.

For these good things to happen, safety must come first.
Source: https://www.thestar.com/opinion/2007/03/10/a_safe_place_for_pedestrians.html

12
Apr

Call for Proposals: The Bentway’s Community Incubation Program

Call for Proposals: The Bentway’s Community Incubation Program

Calling all emerging groups, individuals, and organizations! The Bentway’s 2018 Community Incubation Program is now open for proposals. If @thebentway’s winter season got you excited, here’s your chance to shape their upcoming Fall season.

As Toronto’s newest public space and programming platform, The Bentway is looking for community-based programming that will animate their space, strengthen community ties, and increase visibility to community organizations and interests. They’re especially interested in proposals tackling the theme of “If, But, What If?” – exploring what could be, what perhaps should be, and what may never be within our ever-evolving city.

Info Session: April 11 (6-7 PM) at Fort York Visitor Centre.
Deadline: April 29.

Funding Available: Up to 5k in funding per project
More Info: http://bit.ly/Bentway-CP-2018-FB

12
Apr

Foodshare Toronto Good Food Market

Foodshare Good Food Market

Enjoy the fresh taste of Spring at the 150 Dan Leckie Way Good Food Market, brought to you by FoodShare Toronto.
Coming this Wednesday, April 18th, from 5pm to 7pm at 150 Dan Leckie Way, 3rd Floor Community Kitchen – it’s our best kept secret for those who love fresh food on fleek, without the price gouge! Also featuring pop-ups by the Urban Swine with his Artisinal Market Fresh Sausages and Chef Buoyardy All-Natural Ultra-Spicy Jerk Sauce. FREE sweet treats for the first 25 customers in the door! Doors open at 5pm sharp. Shop early for best selection. Bring along your reusable shopping bags.
See you there!

12
Apr

Bishop Macdonell Catholic School Community Meeting

Bishop Macdonell Catholic School Community Meeting

Bishop Macdonell Catholic School, serving students Kindergarten to Grade 8, will be opening in 2019 at the Canoe Landing Community Centre!

Along with local trustees and senior staff from the Toronto Catholic District School Board, the Concord CityPlace presentation centre at 23 Spadina Ave will host a community meeting on May 3, 2018 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm.

For parents who will be attending, light refreshments and child care will be available!

12
Apr

Artificial Turf in Canoe Landing Park to be Fenced

Artificial Turf in Canoe Landing Park to be Fenced

We were made to understand that as the Canoe Landing Community Facility approach completion and scheduled opening in Fall 2019, a fence will be installed around the Turf field. Attached is a photo showing a rendering of the area to be fenced, and an image showing the type of fence to be used.